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Archive for January, 2013

piginapoke

Pig in a Sack from the James Herriot Studio Collection at The China Cabinet – click on the image to go to the website…

hector-heathcote

Hector Heathcote, a Terrytoons character who was a comic hero of the American War of Independence

I was dismayed the other day when a BBC news presenter said she had never heard of “a pig in a poke” and asked the interviewee what he meant. But then, I would not know the phrase myself had I not heard it in an American TV cartoon when I was a child.

I remembered the cartoon but had forgotten it was called Hector Heathcote – now thanks to some Googling I have identified that a whole episode was called A Pig in a Poke. So that was indeed where I first heard the phrase.

In the Middle Ages it was common for people to sell a dog or cat for meat and pass it off as something tastier, like a pig. And a poke is a bag or sack, so if you buy a pig in a poke, you buy something concealed, without inspecting it, believing it to be a juicy pig.

That’s the literal meaning but (more…)

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snow190113-23

Song thrush (Turdus philomelos) in the snow…

Snow is a rarity here in Cardiff, as it is a city warmed by trade and industry on the soft south coast of Wales. So when we do get snow, I am soon out in the garden with my camera – even though there is not a lot to see.

The snow fell yesterday, but I saw it in the garden only as (more…)

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top-posts-2012

My top five posts in 2012

I’m a bit late with the summing up of my blog successes of 2012. Mainly because I was a bit disappointed. According to those awfully nice “helper-monkeys” at WordPress, my top five blog posts of 2012 were very similar to those of 2011 and not one of them was actually written in 2012.

At first I thought hey, I’m not “hitting the spot” the way I used to! Then I realised (more…)

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wwt-07

Mr and Mrs mallard duck (Anas platyrhynchos) at Llanelli WWT, late December 2012

Although we are now starting a colder and drier spell – maybe with snow on the way – we have had nothing but rain for months. Ideal if you have webbed feet!

So we recently made one of our regular trips to the Wildfowl & Wetland Trust reserve in Llanelli. At this time of year the (more…)

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sparrows-01

House sparrows in a bush, Tintern, December 23, 2012…

I’m back at work now after a long Christmas and New Year break, and I’m picking over the scraps of our midwinter wanderings. I regret that the weather was mostly very wet and dark, so I was mostly hard pushed to take pictures as a record of where we had been.

Although I have a couple of complete blog picture posts pending, there are lots of (more…)

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porthcawl-023

Rest Bay, Porthcawl, on Christmas Day

I always feel the days between Christmas and New Year are like the useless nemontemi days of the Aztecs. In that week we are usually busy doing nothing apart from driving around while I try to snap some pictures. But only now am I sitting still for long enough to share them.

Firstly, here is a refreshing walk along the Wales Coast Path at Rest Bay, Porthcawl, on Christmas Day in the afternoon. It was one of (more…)

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