It's been a while since the last blog post, mainly due to the poor weather, but we have managed to make one excursion: to the Threkeld Mining Museum (I take you to all the best places). Unfortunately, despite the website saying it was open, it wasn't. Still, if you're up for a little tramping around in the cold Cumbrian drizzle, here it is.
“More like a machinery mausoleum than a mining museum,” Ishbel observed, as we tried to avoid the suspiciously grey puddles. A raven forlornly cronked his agreement overhead. Even so, there was a certain contrapuntal beauty between the gaudy, angular leviathans, and the muted natural colours, and contours, of the landscape.
There were, however, signs of spring arriving. Amongst the leafless trees, the willows were in full bud, and in one of the cleaner ditches, the pool frogs had spawned.
And, joy of joys, the first adult insects of the year have emerged. A pair of water crickets. These are in the family Veliidae (the riffle bugs) and are closely related to the Gerridae (water striders). The differences are mainly internal and must have been discovered in the 20th century as my 1896 Cassell's Natural History doesn't mention them.
Meanwhile, there are strange goings-on, going on across the river from the Old Cornmill (where I live). Fearing a new housing estate, I made enquiries. But no, it is an archaeological dig. I am lucky enough to live on the outskirts of the old Roman settlement of Derventio and history, being a relatively new interest of mine, is literally on my doorstep. I'll let you know what they dig up.
Talking of things historical, my little on-line shop is still growing nicely with just short of a hundred items on the shelves at any one time. Come in and have a browse. Steve's Vintage Collectables.
Last time, I mentioned that my new novel, The MONOM (The Magic of Nature of Magic) is now available as a paperback and an ebook. I suppose it would have helped if I'd included the link! Here it is. https://www.amazon.com/stores/Steve-Daniels/author/B081Z8FNK5
(And as the insects are now beginning to appear, it's a good time to get a copy of The Quick Guide To Creepy-Crawlies which you'll find on the same page).
All the best,