"Would you like to go to Forest Farm?" I asked the Boy Wonder. "In a minute," he replied, carrying on building his bricks into a rocket.
A little later: "Shall we go to Forest Farm now?" said R. "No," was the reply. "I am staying here."
"That's OK," said R. "We can stay here if you like. But Grandma needs to go to Forest Farm now to look for a dragonfly, and she thought you might like to go too, and feed the ducks." "No," said the Boy. "You go by yourself, Grandma. Granddad and I will stay here and play."
So that's what happened. I arrived at Forest Farm under heavy cloud (after a somewhat tiresome journey during which I discovered that in the space of a month I've apparently forgotten how to drive a manual shift car), but as I yomped along the towpath to the section of the canal I think of as Dragonfly Gap, the sun came out, and with it the flying food: flies, hoverflies, bees, butterflies, damselflies, and demoiselles. There were even a handful of Common and Ruddy Darters - the first I've seen this year at this site. Of the big guys though - Hawkers, Emperors and Golden-ringed Dragonflies - there wasn't a solitary sign.
R and I are now busily getting ready for the family to descend on us at the weekend, but next week I think I'm going to have to start planning a few Odonata road trips.