Sunday 13 February 2011: Washed up - or the sublime to the ridiculous
Holker marsh, Morecambe Bay
A walk along the strandline at the top of the saltmarsh is usually a bit depressing for the amount of plastic that is washed up. I couldn't help having a good laugh today when I found this though. The last time I was here I found a deflated inflatable boat, perhaps this fellow had fallen out of it.
I was out on the marsh for more Winter Bird Atlas surveys. Today, my visit included part of the private Holker Estate, so having sorted out access, it seemed sensible to run two 2 x 2 Km squares together over a 4 hour visit to save having to come back again. It also meant that I had to go today, whatever the weather, and it was pretty foul for the first couple of hours. It was an odd visit, more for what I didn't see than what I did; the tide was way out and so were the waders, way beyond the limits of the squares I was working. So, despite wandering all over the saltmarsh and mudflats I didn't see or hear a single oystercatcher and only two redshanks. I did see a flock of 150+ pink-footed geese though, an unusual sight in Morecambe Bay. I also saw 4 stock doves on the Holker agricultural land, a new species for the year, taking the total on to 94 species.
I was half joking, half serious yesterday when I said I had been thinking of giving up blipping. I don't want to give it up, but I have to confess I'm struggling. The magic of blip is that it is a community, a supportive group of people that builds around you with time. However, as the blips go by, you find that more and more time is spent communicating with lovely people all over the world. And it is fascinating, fulfilling, educational, inspiring.
The trouble is that life in the material world also goes on, and your time is increasingly squeezed. I work for an organisation that is in a struggle for its existence in difficult economic times, in turn this means that we workers are having to run harder to stand still. My own future, along with my colleagues, hangs in the balance, and depending on what we say on our 1000 word selection form in the next 10 days, our fates will be sealed.
That was what was motivating my comment. I had been thinking of keeping going, but missing out days. But I don't really want to do that, I began this year with the resolve to complete a full year of blips, a record of my year in photos and print, something I've never done before. So what I will have to do is cut down the amount of commenting I do. I won't be able to do it every night, but I will try and catch up with others' journals on a couple of nights a week. In turn, I can't expect people to comment on mine, and that is a real shame for me, for a great part of the pleasure is in the comments I make and receive and the relationships and insights that grow with time.
This won't be forever. Just to get me through the next few difficult weeks. Thank you to all those who yesterday made encouraging comments exhorting me to carry on. That's what blip is all about for me.