Saturday, 31 December 2016

New Year Plans...

Why is the start of a new calendar year so beguiling? I expect I am no different to most in looking forward to January 1st. If you are one of those who crack open a fresh notebook on that date, you have right there a handy metaphor, because the new year is equally pristine. Oh how carefully you write on that first page. Probably your intention is to maintain that commendable neatness for the next twelve months. Unfortunately though, a quick browse through last year's jottings will soon reacquaint you with reality. Blots, smudges, crossings-out, perhaps even the ripped edge of a page removed in annoyance because you mucked it up so badly. And so it is with life. And so it will be in 2017. Nevertheless, a fresh start is a fresh start, and like everybody else I shall embrace it!

I do have plans for next year, but mostly loose ones. For the first time in many, many years some of those plans are fish-related, and as these are probably the most flexible of all I shan't bore you with stuff that might never see the light of day. Then there is bike. I shall try and keep reasonably fit by cycling uphill a lot. Which reminds me: most of the bloggers I read have mentioned plans for this and plans for that during 2017, but never plans for bike. Why not? Loads of them are, like me, verging on doddery, and I think they are missing a trick. Perhaps they lack inspiration? A quick review of one or two NQS cycling posts might be needed. All of them plainly convey the sheer joy provided by two wheels and a steep gradient. And who wants to go to their grave unable to say that they unashamedly wore lycra in public?

After several weeks of hosting viruses I finally got out for a ride today, and as I cycled the mucky lanes I mulled over a 2017 plan I've been toying with...

Bike. Lane. Muck. Standard winter fare.

During the course of 2016 I notched up a few nice birds from my bike, and I wondered whether I might find it interesting next year to actually list them, as in a 'Birds From My Bike' list. Of course it would all be naked eye stuff, or heard, but this year I would have had Wheatear, Whinchat, Redstart, Corn Bunting etc, plus a Hoopoe that I twitched. I think I shall give it a go. Mind you, if I start falling off due to not looking where I'm going, well...

8 comments:

  1. I am genuinely looking forward to it Gavin!

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    1. Cheers Jono, seemed like an easy way to include bird stuff on the blog. And perhaps I should do another list, something like 'Birds While Fishing'?

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  2. That notebook analogy - me to a tee Gav!

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  3. Gav, I'll do a list myself to include running and work, since I'm outdoors a lot. To think I had SEO and a Monty as drive bys. The Monty (male) was being observed from the road side by a mass of birders somewhere outside Great Yarmouth as I was being driven back from a 5000m track race (17:01).
    To get the birds on your biking list on to my biking list, may involve treble figure round trips. It could be done.

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    1. I could have mentioned Med Gull and Yellowhammer too Ric, even the latter not so easy for a W London cyclist these days I'll bet! I did bike-twitch the 2014 Black Hole Marsh Little Crake as well, but I confess to being well off the saddle when I finally saw it!

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    2. Did a biking yearlist once. But it was in Surrey so it was rubbish. Did once find a Red-backed Shrike whilst cycling though near to home though. That was in Surrey too so miracles do happen. I look forward to your pike caught whilst fishing list....trawling a sprat up the towpath perhaps? Atb, Jon W

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    3. Jon, I'm struggling to think of any really good birds I've found while cycling, but there is definitely potential around here. I'd take a Red-backed Shrike any day! Ooh, I've just remembered, I did find a Hawfinch at Stockers Farm in Herts many years ago. I think I was cycling home from work... Anyway, I later learned someone else had already stumbled across it, but that made little difference to my pleasure. What a cracker that was.

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