#115 secret blog: Glamorgan in Gwynedd (20/Nov/18)

apprehensively I stood on the brink, then entered…
the Christmas zone!……
… not by choice, hence the apprehensive part, but it was the only way through to get to my goal, to fulfil my quest, the café in this most excellent garden centre serving the most excellent veggie breakfast, or brunch for me was it as mid-morning, and to savour the some of the most excellent Glamorgan Sausages one will ever taste… happy the man who has enjoyed Glamorgan Sausage for brunch… all ye who read innuendo step away from the blog now and wash your thoughts out, and for the uninitiated they are basically leeks, Caerphilly cheese, herbs, mustard, black pepper wrapped in breadcrumbs in a sausage-shape… you may well be asking though, Christmas?… November?… me too, I know right… I braved the aisles of tinsel, baubles, faux-snow dusted decorations, snow globes of all shapes and ilk, willow reindeer, wreaths, dancing elves, creepy Santa reading Welsh Christmas tales, ducks dressed as Santa, dogs dressed as Santa, penguins dressed as Santa (!?), polar bears dressed as Santa (!!??), festive jigsaws, strings of LED lights, Christmas trees of cardboard, plastic, deadwood, and at the end of it all yet another Santa waving from the most ginormous snow-making machine will seemingly singing every cheesy Christmas pop song ever written… as I got closer it got louder, closer, louder, snow billowing, I was drawn magnetically to its turbulent cacophony, I knew all I had to do was pass within a reindeer’s red nose of touching to finally dive into the haven of the café, filled with glorious welcoming breakfast aromas and coffee and freshly-made that morning plethora of cakes and pasties… if I’d been a Labrador I’d have been drooling rivers by now, as it was I’m not and needed to maintain at least some sense of decorum in the circumstances, i.e. Christmas in November……….. but, make it I did and was rewarded with, you guessed it, Glamorgan Sausages for veggie brekkie……. now all I need to do is escape without being mugged by elves, trampled by reindeer or ho-ho-ho’d at by an army of mechanical Santas………

© 2018 robert greig

when sheep become goldfish (14/Sept/18)

autumn is spilling in, from over the hills and far away to closer and closer each day with limitless bounds grazing the mountains and scavenging summer and gorging on what it leaves behind, all of its flaws and all of its haws, the grating of grates being cleaned and readied, the splitting of logs chopped in the spring to season through summer to feed sacrificial to autumns remorseless embrace… “it’s coming, it’s coming!”, the upland sheep bellow, “have you regrown your fleece?”, as they check each other out to ensure they are ready prepared for what they are built for but still, even a sheep needs wraps itself tight, after all, you’ll not find them huddled in front of a hearth anytime soon… I know what you’re thinking, yet another weather-worn wringing of words about weather, “the weather, the weather, anyone would be forgiven to think you’re obsessed!”, which in all fairness I probably am but you see we are none of us to a man or a woman immune to its vagaries conjured from seemingly nought… some get annoyed, in fact most people do, projecting intent upon it’s every move, they’ll shout and they’ll swear at it, sometimes they’ll smile at it though that is as rare as a unicorn… they’re bothered by how it never stands still, like it has ants in its pants or its feet are on fire, like my patio felt during the heatwave… ah, the heatwave, the heatwave, remember that?… when was that now? so long ago or that’s how it feels as though it was only a dream but it happened, it happened and even then there were those most put-out by its relentless abuse in outstaying its welcome, refusing to rain, and turning a sea of pointlessly-manicured lawns to a marbling of browns to which they equally pointlessly water with sprinklers and hoses ignoring that most of it quietly vanished I evaporation but giving the grass false-hope turning green for a day and then dying a death, as they say… but that was then and this is now and all is maybe forgiven, or possibly not, or at least totally forgotten by those with the memory and attention-span of a goldfish… … … so how did we make it to this, from sheep to goldfish, have to be careful upon what you wish…… autumn is coming, as if you didn’t know, filling the blanks that summer’s left vacant, at least here it is anyway and here is the only here I can be as if I was there I’d be there……… … …

© 2018 robert greig

beady blue eyes (12/Sept/18)

like swallows or starlings the jackdaws balance on power line in uncomfortable rows as though it’s not quite in their nature to do so, but unlike the swallows and starlings they’re envious of their aerial attires and skill in the air, swallows the acrobats, starlings the dazzlers, both unaware of banquet of envious eyes looking on and wishing, wishing, why they weren’t born a swallow or starling and instead just a jackdaw, the colours of shadows and all too soon sporting tinges of grey as though aging before ones time, though their beady blue eyes are a sight to behold as little they know that blue eyes are rare in this avian world, almost but not quite unique… and they balance quiet well but not quite as deft as swallows or starlings with their delicate claws as opposed to the slightly more wrinkly digits adorning the jackdaws legs… the jack’ is an envious bird as can be heard in their infernal squabbling during the day they crackle away and come the night the gossip on every complaint while they wait and they wait and they wait balanced on power lines, waiting and waiting some more until… well, until none of them knows what happens and drives them back on the air in a race to the rookery (see, it’s not even named after them… o the poor jackdaw!) to play musical branches once again a free-for-all frenzy and made even worse when a headwind’s determined to foil their best-laid plotting and scheming, most unlike the swallows and starlings to whom the jackdaws see have got their collective acts together… or have they?… the swallow who constantly worries about eating enough and not eating too much for a thousand and more miles of migration south through paroxysms of weather, sportsmen with guns, wind determined to blow them off course…. and the starling, safer in numbers than out of their own and suitably small for a sparrowhawks beak, or even a kestrels, a buzzards, a magpie, maybe an occasional crow and even when they find succour among the tall reeds in their hundreds and thousands there’s weasels and ferrets, foxes and cats and even a bittern or heron ready to gobble them up so…… so the jackdaws look on unaware that maybe, just maybe it could be much worse……… but, but why couldn’t they have a nice song to sing!

© 2018 robert greig