Thursday 7 April 2011: Ancient pear
Another late blip - there doesn't seem to have been a spare moment today -and I've only taken four photographs in total!
We had to make another emergency trip to the vet first thing this morning , as Henny Penny has now succumbed to the Coryza virus. It's affected her eyes, which are swollen and infected, but fortunately it's not progressed to her chest yet. So yet more antibiotics and regular bathing of the eyes with black tea - and another chicken living in the house!
This meant we were late getting to Orton Pit for the first butterfly transect of the season. We eventually caught up with the rest of the group, and saw a scattering of butterflies (mostly peacocks and a few green-veined whites) as well as a young great crested newt, a grass snake and a little egret. I found a huge and ancient wild pear tree in the woodland at the southern end of the reserve, absolutely smothered with blossom. These are very local around Peterborough, and strangely I've never seen more than one in any woodland.
Having arrived late we had to leave early, as Alex and Ben were going ice-skating. Then home to give Chris a haircut and prepare a special Vietnamese meal for Pete's birthday (which isn't actually until Saturday, but we wanted to celebrate with Chris and Lizzy before they leave for China tomorrow). The meal, which we all contributed to, was a great success, and was accompanied by a playlist of Pete's favourite music and poetry - an eclectic mix including John Cooper Clarke, Ivor Cutler, The Bonzo Dog Doodah Band, Mumford and Sons, Bellowhead, Leonard Cohen and John Martyn.
We're now watching Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives - Pete's birthday film selection. I suspect we should have looked at Freespiral's review beforehand....