I think I must have seen either the 1949(?) film on my grandmother's television when I was a child, or it was a made-for-TV film, but the expression "exploratious meanderings" from H.G.Wells' Mr Polly has stuck with me ever since. I suspect it may already have been in use in my literary family, for we used it often. In fact, I was sure I would find I'd used it as a title on Blip already, but the predictive text didn't predict the expression so I guess I'm all right...
As I write this, once more on the brink of midnight, the rain is falling outside, ever so gently. It was promised to arrive around 3pm, with increasing certainty, but by 3pm there still wasn't a cloud in the sky. However, because of this forecast, we decided not to waste the morning doing horrid, dusty things in the loft but would instead bunk off for a walk and see about lunch when we got back. There was fat cumulus over the hills, so we headed south and parked at the Ardyne, intending primarily to walk out along the beach road. There was a brisk, mild wind dashing small waves onto the shore, and on a far spit of sand a whole flock of Canada Geese was pretending to be seagulls as it sat among them. It was glorious.
What is less glorious, however, is the parlous state of Himself's knee, so when we got back to the car I abandoned him and set off briskly up the road in an attempt to get the heart-rate up and feel I'd actually had some exercise. Because I was alone, I decided to explore a farm track that used to have a forbidding sign at its entrance saying, rather traditionally, Beware of the Bull. The sign is still there, but the writing has faded to nothing. I decided the bull might also be no more and set off.
It was like walking in a new world. Small birds - some of them were pied wagtails, but I couldn't be sure of the rest - flew up from in front of me as I walked, and sat cheeping in the hedgerows. Black cattle gazed solemnly from well-fenced fields as I approached a little wood - might I call it a copse without being too poetic? As I rounded a corner between the trees, a sudden movement alerted me to a large buzzard which had been perched on a fallen tree beside the track and which rose into the air as I disturbed it. I watched as it soared around the trees and high into the sky, where it was joined, with much squeaking, by a second buzzard. They performed a wonderful airborne ballet before settling once more in some trees on the far side of the field. I felt utterly privileged.
Lunch was late, and was probably the last taken outside for a while. We spent the afternoon, or what was left of it, on holidays - sorting out the rescheduling, for the fourth time, of our Italian holiday, and reserving the inside of a week in a recommended hotel in the Borders in September. I did some Italian and made a rather splendid pasta dish with prawns and an aubergine. And that was that, really, apart from online Compline.
Last thoughts: Olympic skateboarding is exciting; sport climbing is addictive; buzzards make a really feeble noise for such a magnificent bird. Night night!