A weekend in the village……

I’m sure I used to hate having no travels planned at the weekend, especially Saturday, I’m sure I used to always be out of the village on a Saturday 🤔….but now, if the weather’s nice, there’s no better place to be than my village….this was actually a couple of weekends ago…but I forgot to publish 🙄

I hadn’t woken at dawn as I usually did, so it was mid morning before I got out. The village cricket team were at home today so I was on photo duties there in the afternoon. But first a walk to the Westwood was on the cards. The day before had been scorchio, but today it was ten degrees cooler, so my fleece was back on – that’s an English summer for you! But a hint of blue sky was reflected in the water as the ducks had a snooze after breakfast

Just by the traffic lights, I peered into Rectory Farm and their newborn foal was now getting to know it’s new home

It’s young tail looks like a foxes and it’s fox red colour highlights this even more..

A Jenny Wren sang out loud perched on the telegraph wire

I love seeing the crops grow. Field after field of potatoes had been sown and all you can see all around these fields are the perfect lines of mounds of healthy potatoe plants

The morning park runners were heading to the finish line as I reached my favourite line of trees

I wondered round in a circle, eventually entering the village once more and noticing the bowls club gates were open. I walked up the steep slope to see two matches in progress. All looked very serious. Must be the early rounds for the club doubles championship. I refrained from sitting going round to sit on my bench in fear of disturbing their concentration…but at least the sun was shining for them

After lunch and a visit from Sarah, I headed to the cricket match. I detoured through the churchyard to see if the baby tree creepers were still there. I’d seen them the day before climbing the church walls in search of shade from the intense heat, but today was so much cooler. I could hear their tiny buzzing noise so knew they were somewhere. Scanning the branches for these tiny babies, I followed the buzz and there they were chasing each other around the branches

Happy to have seen them once more, I tried not to get distracted again as I headed up to the cricket field. A couple passed me by and said:

They’re waiting for their photographer Wendy” 🤣

I’d better get a wiggle on then”…….

I zoomed in to see if they were batting or fielding….we were batting. I headed around the field, clicking as I went, runs being taken, a four going over the boundary ….we were doing well. All the way around the edge of the pitch, moving every time an over finished…..finally reaching the club house.

Want a cuppa Wendy?” A nice greeting and offered a seat in the ‘royal box’ – the table where the woman keeps score on a very complicated looking score pad which is synced to her ipad 🤯…..but lovely to feel part of the team to be allowed to sit there.

We were all very cold sat there and cricket sweaters were much in evidence on the pitch – rather that than the heatwave of the day before. Ade, our batsman soon reached his 50 and all clapped loudly as he raised his bat in thanks. But I was beginning to stiffen with the cold and I knew my battery would need changing soon, so I left saying I’d be back later.

As I reached home, I snuggled in bed, my hands wrapped around a cuppa to warm up and looked out at the trees over the paddock.

Once warm I headed back to find Walkington had finished their innings and Ade had got a century!! – I was gutted to have missed that photo, a very rare photo it would have been as no one gets a century in village cricket 🙄

We had a decent score and were surely heading for a victory. Now bowling, so different photos but I managed to get this wicket tumbling, the stumps flying through the air

As our bowler indicated that was the first of many

The clouds were looming and becoming very heavy, the light was fading and I knew we needed to end this quickly. The cold defeated me in the end – who would have thought I’d be typing that sentence mid June 😳 I said my farewells to the rest of the team on the by line

…..promising I was definitely free for their 150th celebration day in August. Somehow they’d managed to arrange an MCC team especially for the occasion and they wanted me to record the day in pictures, saying I’d be fed and watered well 🤣…..it was going to be one very special day for the village.

As I sat later at home, the heavens opened, starting with the odd spot of rain and then a deluge. I posted their photos on the village Facebook page and asked if they’d won in the hope they’d finished before the rain arrived…..Imagine my surprise when the message came back……

A thrilling finish – in the rain and with wickets tumbling, Pelican needed 6 an over to win for the last 7 overs but a wet ball made things difficult for our bowlers. With heavier rain in the last 2 overs, and needing 6 from the last 6 balls (5 to tie), Pelican hit 1, 1, 0(out), 4 to complete the huge chase with 2 balls to spare.

What a last over that must have been – the team must have been gutted…..

The following morning, Sunday, couldn’t have been more different. I’d gone out at 4.15am and the moon had hung around for the start of the day

There was a gentle glow in the sky as the sun rose promising a sunny day

I headed around the back of Halfpenny cottage. In the field next door, there’s now sheep and they were spotlighted by the morning sun

Enjoying the morning peace and snapping along the way – what better way to start a day. A flash of white caught my eye and I followed its flight eventually snapping. What I hadn’t realised until I got home, was I captured a swallow in the same photo

I saw several barn owls in a short space of time wlthough they could have been the same one 🤣

I was almost at Folly Lake when the familiar snuffle in the long grass could be heard….I saw the target white rump first, then it lifted its head, turned and looked through the farm fence

Down into Folly lake, I thought I had it to myself until I followed a line of geese. They’d parked themselves next to the mans tent – probably in the hope of a share of his breakfast

Six of the ducklings, which I’d been watching since they were tiny, had all survived but were always recognisable by their keeping all together

I headed back up to the the road and instead of turning left to walk through the fields, I turned right to retrace my steps. There’d been a heavy storm overnight and I knew the long grass would have soaked my shoes and trouser bottoms. It meant I saw the Yellow Hammer singing it’s wonderful song:

“A little bit of bread and a piece of cheeeeeeese”, which always makes me smile.

The poppies on the edge of the wheat field glinted with pearls of water on their delicate foliage; their wafer thin petals moving gently in the breeze

As I reached home, I tried to think where else I could walk before lunch as I’d rather walk for hours than sit for hours. I decided on the Westwood. The young foal in the vicarage farm field was doing well, mum always close by

I took the footpath instead of walking along the road. There’s a lovely gap where I can zoom into the Black Mill.

I peaked through a gap in the hedge to spy the flourishing potato plants

Finally in the sunny Westwood, the heat now starting to intense as noon approached. Walkers of all types were out on the pasture.

One woman with her two lovely dogs overtook me and said in response to my greeting

It’s lovely whatever the weather up here”

I finally spotted the cows, lying in the long grass and headed towards them. I could hear skylarks either side of me in the long grass and occasionally one would flutter up in the sky before coming down to land again, but too quick for me to take photos so I simply watched and listened to their antics instead.

Once I’d said hello to the cows

….I got my bearings, searching for the Black Mill and headed home.

I decided that my afternoon walk would be my last as the heat was taking its toll on me today, but am sooooo glad I did. I’d decided just a nice Sunday walk around the village would end my weekend perfectly, so I headed for the pond. The picture that greeted me made me grin the hugest smile

A new set of ducklings had arrived and they’d snuggled next to Teresa Terrapin on her log..

We’ve been quite unlucky with our ducklings this year as only a handful had survived. So seeing this bonus of six had made my day. I snapped so many photos of them, I had to put a post just for them on the village Facebook page 😂

As I threw the seed, they all scuttled keeping close to mum. Mum decided to dive under for the food so kept disappearing out of their sight. It was so comical watching their sudden fright as mum disappeared one minute

then reappeared the next

I must have stayed for ages in the same spot and I felt my neck being burnt by the sun. So having this bonus entertainment by the ducklings I decided to call it a day. It had been a wonderful weekend in my village; so much going on, so much friendliness and a community to be grateful for…I’m so lucky. One last piccie before I leave these adorabubbles…..

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