On Saturday, I allowed myself a lazy morning in bed. I took my cup of tea and breakfast upstairs, opened my window wide and listened to the screechy chirps of the goldfinches in the oak tree directly outside my bedroom. The sunlight was glinting and caught the yellow bars on their wings as they picked at the leaves in search of insects.
The whole of Sunday was spent working on portraits so I took a few minutes in the evening, just as the sun had dipped, to stand in the bridleway next to our house and listen to the birdsong. The songs of blackbirds, song thrushes and robins floated on the air, layered on top of each other and a few rabbits hopped along the bridleway, unaware of me stood very still at the end.
Monday heralded the start of our "heatwave" and at eight in the morning, the temperature was already high. With another long day of work planned, I took the opportunity to sit out in the garden while I had my breakfast, wriggling my toes in the grass and listening to the dunnock calling from the hedge, one long, high-pitched squeak.
Enter the 30th of June, the final day of 30 Days Wild and I was to be found volunteering at Pulborough Brooks. Boy, was it a hot one! One of the members of the volunteer work party asked me if I wished I was working out on the reserve on a day like yesterday and I in all honesty was quite glad to be inside. Partly because I burn so easily, so extended time in strong sun is never a brilliant idea for me. During my lunch break, I sat outside by the pond next to the visitor centre and listened to the sparrows, blue tits and the clucking of a moorhen. A male blackbird landed in front of me with his beak stuffed full of small morsels. I think there were some fledglings sparrows still in the nest boxes, poking their heads out and squawking to their parents.
Although I had quite a lot of work and volunteering keeping me occupied during June, I still just about managed to have my moments with nature each day and even learned a few new things. The campaign was a very effective way of encouraging us to engage with the natural world more often and I intend to keep it up wherever possible, by visiting new places and continuing to educate myself, particularly on bird songs and calls which remains my weakest area.
Stay wild everybody!