Butterflies and Kingfisher

Just last weekend the river bank at Holne Bridge was dotted with yellow daffodils.  They have all finished now leaving only a carpet of smiling wood anemones and the first bluebell I have seen out so far this year.  Spring it seems is in full flow.

The daffodils may have gone but there is a veritable blizzard of bright yellow butterflies all up along the river at New Bridge.  Apparently they hatch with the yellow colour and then turn to white but I never seem to see the white ones only these canary yellow hatchlings.

Stopping to watch the butterflies dance over a pond I am startled by the kingfisher that whirls away from a nearby branch.  Whilst I have on occasion been able to drift to within 10 feet or so of one I am surprised this one had not long gone with my noisy arrival. I lose track but I think it is the first I have seen this year and for a moment I watch it whirl away.  I am always left with the impression that they don’t so much flap their wings as row through the air, which seems appropriate somehow.

The river is in full flow too, not high, but 10 to 12 inches up where it flows under Holne Bridge and dark, dark and mysterious waters.  Drawn in and swept downstream the bridge is soon lost back in the trees.

Under the rope swing and out into the big pool where the sun clears the trees but does little to penetrate the dark water.  My toes are dragging over the sand and rounded stones but they are out of sight in the darkness.

If this were the summer I would sweep on and wash up on the weir, but today the current is too strong and I’d be over the top and self evidently that would not be a good end to the day.

Wild Swimming
Wild Swimming

What is a good end to the day is that as I walk back to the van there’s a fifty pence piece lying in the dirt at the roadside.  Finding a penny always brings good luck but have I had my good luck today or is it still to come?


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