Friday, 11 December 2015

Of Dross...

For the last three days I've been working in the Seaton area and have arranged things so I could have my lunch beside the estuary. The gull presence has been quite good, but despite my best efforts I have failed to find a Casp or better. Even so, it's been a pleasure to sit there, munch my sarnie and grill the gullage...and I suppose that's another benefit of self-employment.

Yesterday I lowered the window and took this shot...

Left to right: dross, 1st-winter Med Gull, dross times three
As the caption says, a lovely 1W Med Gull. 'Dross' is a pejorative term, I know, but is kind of appropriate in the context of gull watching. When metal ore is put through the smelting process, dross is what rises to the surface of the molten mass. It comprises the impurities, the rubbish that you want rid of. Imagine if I could sit there munching my sarnie and all the dross was magically cleared away for me, leaving just the 24-carat gulls behind. I would raise my bins to the two birds remaining, and gasp with delight...

Though in reality they would both be Med Gulls. This would happen so often that I might begin to wish Meds too could be classified as dross. Hmmm, I already know the consequences of that. Apart from about once every month or two I would dab away the butty crumbs and find myself looking at an empty estuary. And where's the fun in that? I guess there's a familiar truism in this fantasy: if something is too easy it probably won't be satisfying.

Actually I really enjoy picking through the dross. It can be almost therapeutic, there's a challenge to it, and fairly often there's a nice reward. I only wish I could do it quicker, so I might hurry back to work all the sooner...

No comments:

Post a Comment