Thursday, 17 May 2018

BBC wildlife photography: hares

I was driving along the road that leads to our house the other day, and there were a couple of hares in the field, right beside the road.  I stopped the car beside them, just a few feet away, and got my phone out to photograph them.  It doesn't take long to get to the camera function, but it wasn't fast enough.  They ran away.  Here's a photo of them running away.

Tuesday, 8 May 2018

Not a molehill

There's at least one mole in the garden now, throwing up occasional little heaps of reddish soil.  I thought I saw a new molehill this morning, but then it moved.  My eyes aren't up to much these days.

Monday, 7 May 2018

Spring clearout

We're now in full Springtime mode, with warmer weather (sometimes) and flowers everywhere.  It's also time for the Spring clearout which means selling your stuff at car boot sales (vide greniers; empty lofts in French).  The biggest one in the whole of Mayenne was at Montigné le Brillant last weekend, so we went to this one, and then on to another at Montsurs.  It was hot: 26 degrees in the shade, and most stallholders had sunshades up, and walking around was warm work.  This poor bear must be sweltering in the heat, wearing that black fur coat.

The idea of emptying lofts is great, of course, but it results, potentially in my buying more clutter for my own place.  These car boots were no exception, but the haul was rather unusual for me.  I came across a fine pair of leather shoes, new condition (never worn I think) that happened to fit.  I'm getting a bit tired of my daily uniform of trainers, jeans and T-shirt, so the idea of some different shoes at only €10 a pair appealed.  I bought the two pairs on offer.

I'm usually on the lookout for audio equipment, especially rack-mounted, for use in a sound studio.  My system is in bits at the moment, for want of time and space (and a computer), but there's no harm in buying useful stuff if it presents itself.  Here's a nice little amplifier, of ye olde transistorised design, class A/B, 100 watts per channel, analogue power supply.  It called out to me.  25 euro.  I tested it with some decent speakers and a good source, it sounds remarkably good for what it is.  That'll come in handy.  Honest.  And a couple of CDs to add to the collection, why not?

P.S.  I also noticed the following, that amused me:  "Epilator for sale, used once".

Tuesday, 24 April 2018

Catering Caterham

I was surprised to discover that there is a Caterham 7 fan club in France.  This car is based on the English Lotus 7 design, in the style of racing cars of a previous era.  More here. 

Last weekend we hosted a club of Caterham 7 owners here, for a weekend of rallying and their AGM.  We had perfect weather too; blue skies with occasional cloud and 25° temperatures.

I do fancy one of those.

Thursday, 19 April 2018

An unexpected visitor

I was intrigued, early this morning, by a strange sound coming from outside.  I went to look, and a hot air balloon had landed in the field next door, and was being kept vertical with regular noisy bursts of a gas burner.

I have seen this balloon drift past on a few occasions before, but this was the first time it had landed anywhere nearby.  It was piloted by an instructor and two trainees.  There was no wind at ground level, but, according to the instructor, the air was moving at about 20kph higher up.  When this wind comes down to ground level, as it is sure to do at some time, landing the balloon would be difficult and dangerous, so he decided to land early.

There was a lot of dew on the grass in the field, so they asked if they could bring the balloon into the car park to deflate it, so it wouldn't get wet.  So they walked it across the road (with a little difficulty), deflated it in the car park, wrapped it up and had a quick coffee while they waited for the retrieval car to fetch them.

Thursday, 12 April 2018

Spring flowers

The weather has been pretty unpleasant so far this Spring.  Here's an antidote to bad vibes.

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