Thursday, 17 July 2008

Wake up and smell the flowers!

In this post I will show some places where we have been out for walks with Zebedee recently. I have to say I have enjoyed every walk tremendously regardless of the level of pain I have been in. The scenery is fantastic, Zebedee fun to walk with, and we have met nice people and dogs and seen plenty of different weather conditions. I especially love watching the sea and the sky above it; the light and the colours change every day and every time of day.

Here we are on top of Castle Hill, overlooking Newhaven harbour and Seaford Head in the distance.

Zebedee had an ear-raising surprise that day: another springer! And a black and white springer at that! It is very rare to see black and white ones; most of them are liver and white. (Which is why we had to go all the way to Gloucestershire to get Zebedee.) (The adult springer is black and white, honest. I just converted this photo to B&W because of the blown out areas.)

Posing by a milestone along the coastal cliffs.

Another day, another weather.

Blackberries are in bloom.

Looking into inland.

Sometimes it's very windy, and poor Z gets his ears turned inside out... we found shelter behind some grasses for a proper pose. (He looks so big in this photo! He is getting bigger so fast sometimes I'm convinced he has grown an inch overnight.)

Another windy day the three of us went to Devil's Dyke.

A couple of days ago we went to Devil's Dyke first thing in the morning, and saw a lot of paragliders.

Click on the image to see a bigger version.

Yesterday we went for a walk at Birling Gap where there are lots of lovely little plants that I have never seen/noticed before - same as on Castle Hill.

Think it's really handy to be able to take photos while walking a three-month-old puppy? Think again! Every time I try to take a close-up of a plant, the puppy appears out of nowhere and eats it. Usually it's quite windy by the sea, so when taking macro shots I use continuous shooting mode so that even though the plant moves in the wind, there is a chance of getting at least one shot in perfect focus. And this is the kind of sequence I end up getting half the time:

(In case you didn't recognise - that was the nose of an inquisitive, flower/insect eating puppy.)

Whatever I am taking a photo of, Zebedee has to come and eat it!

And guess how easy it is to take photos of butterflies... You very slowly and carefully creep up on a butterfly so as not to scare it off. Slowly, slowly... and woosh! a puppy runs into the scene to check out what you are so interested in. Well, I managed to get one today - kind of. This is Marbled White.

This is probably the weirdest looking beetle I have ever seen. Look at its feet!


Then there is river Ouse. We can follow the river all the way to the next village and, when lucky, see some egrets and other wading birds along the way. (One of these days I will take my 400mm lens so that I can take some photos of them.)

This summer really has been like Zebedee demonstrates in the first photo in this post: wake up and smell the flowers: life can be so much fun! I am so happy that I left the ridiculous world of office work and started enjoying life to the full again. Kind of shame that I got caught up working in the City for that many years; after all, never in my life did I imagine - let alone plan - to work in an office for years and years. Then again, it is because of the money I earned during those years that I was able to make this decision to quit everything for a while and start again with something more sensible when the time is right. 'Sensible' meaning whatever makes life more enjoyable!

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