Books, Nature

Why do birds suddenly disappear? – Lev Parikian

“The thought bludgeons me around the head, as it has done repeatedly throughout the year: what the hell was I doing for those thirty-five years? How could I have gone so long without this simple pleasure in life? What was I thinking?”

Continue reading “Why do birds suddenly disappear? – Lev Parikian”

Adventures, Books, Nature, Recommendations

The Seabird’s Cry – Adam Nicolson

It is not stupid to think that birds might play, and here from the clifftop it has always looked as if that is what the fulmars were doing: the endless, repeated turns, first on one great circle and then another, skaters outlining discs on the ice, stiff-winged, patient, waiting for the long rotation to take its form, a series of geometries, as if the birds were cutting shapes through the paper of the air.

The air doesn’t always comply. Now and then a strange lack of certainty runs through a fulmar, even as it makes these Euclidean digrams beneath you, a whole-body hesitation, coughing in mid-flight, when it shudders and disassembles, all sleekness gone and all purpose paused, as if waiting for the data stream to resume, which it then does, and the long effortless gestures, milking energy from the wind, continue from one end of the ballroom to the other.

Continue reading “The Seabird’s Cry – Adam Nicolson”

2016 reading challenge, Adventures, Books, Reading challenges, Recommendations

Sightlines – Kathleen Jamie

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With her poet’s eye and naturalist’s affinity for wild places, Kathleen Jamie reports from the field in this enthralling collection of fourteen essays whose power derives from the stubborn attention she pays to everything around her. Jamie roams her native Scottish “byways and hills” and sails north to encounter whalebones and icebergs. Interweaving personal history with her scrutiny of landscape, Jamie dissects whatever her gaze falls upon—from vistas of cells beneath a hospital microscope, to orcas rounding a headland, to the aurora borealis lighting up the frozen sea. Written with precision, subtlety, and wry humor, Sightlines urges us to “Keep looking. Keep looking, even when there’s nothing much to see.” Continue reading “Sightlines – Kathleen Jamie”

Adventures, Books Are My Bag, Theatre

Shakespeare Saturday, in which I took the Bard for a muddy walk, and he nearly got eaten by a goose

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On Saturday, which was Shakespeare Saturday, I had plans for pizza and Star Wars with Chloe in the afternoon, so I couldn’t go to any bookshops for Events. But in the morning, I had no plans, so my mum asked me to go and buy some bread for lunch. We have a few supermarkets near us, and they’re all very quick to get to by car, but I thought a walk would do me good, so I set off across the park to Tescos. When I stopped at one point to watch the swallows, a woman asked me about my bag, so I told her all about Books Are My Bag and Shakespeare Saturday. Then I put it down to take a photo and this goose was very very interested indeed. Continue reading “Shakespeare Saturday, in which I took the Bard for a muddy walk, and he nearly got eaten by a goose”