A tiny pleasure on Southampton Common

 

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The swans dominated the news at the beginning of this week. On Monday morning I stopped by briefly on my way to work, and was rewarded by the sight of the pair on the Ornamental Pond mating. The female swan has since been spending some time sitting where their nest is usually located on the island, so no doubt some serious building will begin soon. Looking back, their schedule is very much the same as last year, so perhaps I should book a few days leave for when the cygnets might hatch.DSC_0587DSC_0587To purchase an unmarked copy of this image please click on this link
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Meantime, there has been plenty of action elsewhere on the Common, and I have (again) made the mistake of trusting the weather forecast. This morning I set off for my weekly promenade with my friend attired for clouds and rain. Initially, this was exactly what was on offer, and I arrived at our rendezvous point at the Ornamental Pond just as a sizeable downpour began. Huddling under the slight shelter of some trees waiting for her I tried to talk myself into believing that today would be an excellent opportunity to practice taking shots of the shady woodland areas.

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However, as we set off on our constitutional the rain receded, and by the time I bade her farewell and went to the Old Cemetery the sun was shining, I was overdressed, and the bees were making an appearance. The longish semi –macro lens that I use for insects who do not like photographers was standing safely on the table at home, and I berated myself (possibly aloud) for trusting the gloomy bee-less forecast. Nevertheless, with the blossom cheering up the soggy pathways, and four Brimstone butterflies flitting past, I was very happy indeed and promised myself that I would never again leave that particular lens at home between now and November.

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After a brief stop at the Cemetery Lake for some mildly disapproving looks from the ducks and an impressive bit of splashing from a coot I trudged away from the Common muddy of boot but light of heart. I was really very glad that I had not been consigned to a morning in the undergrowth, and despite the snow that is forecast for the weekend I know that the macro season is pretty much here. For the next few months I can spend many hours throwing my happiness on the mercy of tiny, unwilling subjects. Won’t that be fun?!

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