Saturday, July 10, 2010


The winter solstice has just been and gone. Here in the highlands, there's been a run of cold bleak overcast days, some with steady light rain, others with showers and drizzle, but none of the heavy drenching downpours around Sydney and the coast. Occasionally there's a reminder of what sunshine was like.

I like it. It's good walking weather and an excuse to avoid outside jobs. I love starting the fire early and lighting candles, during the day. One of the things I liked about Denmark was the daytime use of candles, at threshholds. Nothing self-consciously new-agey, just a welcome, a light, a warmth.

This morning there was a gossamer mist floating up from the gully as the sun tried to break through.

A couple of Harmonica birds, Grey thrush-shrike, (Colluricincla harmonica), were out on the grass for breakfast. They may look grey and drab, but these two-feet-on-the-ground all hopping all singing birds pour forth endless songs of gorgeous tone and commanding rythym.

They used to nest in the young Old Man Banksias I'd planted next to some windows, and peck on their glass mirror image in the early morning light. Now I see them mostly feeding on the grass along with the Rosellas and Eastern yellow robins.

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