Sunday, January 27, 2008

Ham Wall Part 2


As sunset developed its colours in the skies, gloriously reflected in the waters, a small flock of birds wheeled across the sky. We found our way through a stand of trees to the rhyne, beyond which was a clear view across a water meadow.


Gradually, more and more groups of birds sped across, making for the same copse of trees. Some groups flew over our heads, others passed to our left or to our right. There would be a pause, then more and more came. Tonight was not the occasion of a dense swarm as sometimes happens, but as more and more flew in and on to that same copse, it became difficult to imagine how they would all pack themselves in to such a relatively limited space, the total gradually increasing as the minutes passed.


As we accepted that an extreme aerial display was not going to be forthcoming on this occasion, the sound of the birds calling to one another increasingly amplified across the moors, swelling to a climax as if calling the stragglers to hurry on home.


It was time to make our own way homewards, before the light finally went. Retracing our steps, we looked across the rhyne to see a deer leaping through the grasses at the edge of the reed bed. By the time we regained the road, it was nearly dark and it was becoming very cold under the clear sky. We decided to make a stop at the cosy Railway Inn for warming refreshment and to rest our legs before making our way back across the moors, levels and hills for home.

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