Archive for August, 2012


The grand Italian garden at Compton Acres, Poole, Dorset

OK, I know, they aren’t really a secret, but the gardens at Compton Acres, at Canford Cliffs between Poole and Bournemouth, were new to me, even though I have visited Dorset so often in the past.

The 10 acres, in a little valley, feature many (more…)

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Signs of London 2012 in Weymouth…

The London 2012 Olympics almost passed me by – I was busy at work for the beginning and away on holiday at the end. I enjoyed the clever opening ceremony on TV, and saw the wonderful gold medal performances by Nicola Adams in the boxing and Jade Jones in the taekwondo on TV in our hotel. And I stayed up late to watch Tom Daly’s bronze in the high diving. But that was it, really.

Except that I CAN claim to have been in Weymouth during the Olympic sailing events. Long before we found out that the sailing was going to take place there, we had (more…)

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Blackbird gymnast goes for gold…


This blackbird (Turdus merula) flings itself at the bird fat and pecks off chunks…

What’s that they say about the Olympics? Faster, higher, stronger?

This blackbird in my garden has got into the Olympic spirit, exercising on the bird fat for weeks in the run-up to the London 2012 Games. Its technique is to hurl itself at the fat and knock pieces off, then drop to the ground to eat them. I think it’s a method copied from the magpies.

Many of the (more…)

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