Blackbirds return!

Well the day has started better than I expected. Shortly after my shower this morning I crept out into the garden at 8.30am (coffee in hand) like I was in a Scooby Doo cartoon to see whether or not there was any change on the blackbird nest front. I had been thinking about it on and off for most of yesterday afternoon – and honestly it negatively coloured my mood for the rest of the day.

Yesterday afternoon and evening the birds seemed to have abandoned their eggs comply after my screw up (link).

Putting some cover back over the nest (even though I’m not sure how long it will last) appears to have done the trick though. For the time being the property seems to be under blackbird management again and there, sitting on the nest was mommy.

If you look carefully at this cropped image (taken at a distance) you can see the little orange beak in the middle (left) and tail feathers on the right.


This video gives an idea of how precarious their home now is (and how frighteningly exposed) – but you probably won’t make out the bird on the nest in the centre until the last few frames. She blends in to her surroundings surprisingly well and is a truly lovely little creature.

After taking a photo or two (cameraphones are awful for this kind of thing so I apologise for the clarity) I carried on with my business of chopping up twigs and filling refuse sacks at a respectful distance (as quietly as I possibly could).

For the time being that particular part of the hedge is going to be off limits and totally sacrosanct.

Very encouragingly while I was working I saw the bird leave her seat, potter around the garden (watching me all the time) picking up twigs and food and then return back to the nest – so I know that as long as I stay relatively clear it’s likely that things will remain on an even keel. I may however have to look at engineering some more cover if what she’s currently got (a pruned branch hastily placed there yesterday by me) begins to wilt.

The eggs appear to be intact though for the time being!


Today (typing at 11am) I’m meeting up for a lunchtime drink with some ex-colleagues – which oddly has left me feeling quite nervous.

I’m not the shy type – but (as I’ve said to a lot of people that morbidly obese Davey managed to lose contact with over the years) seeing anyone after a prolonged absence has always been a big deal that’s caused me incredible levels of stress.

The truth of it is that I was always obsessed with the fact that when arranging a date to meet someone I was invariably going to seem much bigger than the last time I met them. I used to turn the shame related to this over and over in my head until I just couldn’t face going and bowed out.

This was of course if I even managed to get as far as discussing meeting up in the first place – as most of the time it never got that far. If I had then I invariably cancelled with some lame excuse way in advance, but only after worrying about it for days or even weeks. It was sometimes on my mind for months.  I sh*t you not!

Quite justifiably I’m sure I was viewed on occasion as the world’s worst friend.

Of course the weight thing is a totally different situation now – and since I last saw some of these people that may be going today I’ve lost almost 11 stone (I’d already started Slimming World in April before being made redundant in July 2016).

I don’t feel ashamed this time around – but oddly the event is still causing me to feel nervous.

(author goes to meet friends)

Well as always my ex-colleagues were in rude health. They haven’t changed at all and are all reassuringly just as they were not that long ago. Some though are now facing the prospect of a similar redundancy process to the one myself and others went through this time last year and I can see the worry about the future on their faces.

I know that it’s not as simple as saying ‘it will all be ok’ – because each one of them has their own practical (and valid) concerns that make their specific set of circumstances unique to them – however as we talked I couldn’t help try and mention the positives that the last year has brought to my life.

Whilst change is hard and often uncomfortable it’s also something that can bring new beginnings and transform ‘simply existing’ into ‘genuinely living’. Although I know I had more to change than most people and not everyone needs to radically re-invent themselves the possibilities for growth are endless.

Given that those remaining are amongst the best my old company had to offer in terms of skills and personal energy I have no doubt that they’ll rise to the challenge and realise (if they haven’t already) that change is often a very positive thing.

If they’re reading I’d also like to thank them for all the hugs and compliments. It was great to see them again!

On the way home – and in a good mood – I decided that the only thing that could improve my day even further was unlimited salad. As I was passing a Harvester on my route I decided that it would be rude to not stop in and continue to work on getting banned by their staff for abusing their plate refill policy.


Thankfully the poor fools still appear to be willing to let me experiment on how much value I can squeeze out of £3.99 – and I’m more than happy to relieve them of their crunchy tomatoes in return.

Hopefully none of this will adversely affect the scales tomorrow… Only time will tell. I feel like I’m slowing down at the moment (although it’s still been pretty humid lately) and since I’m eating absolutely NOTHING off plan if I’m not losing weight then the only thing to do is look at reducing portion sizes.

If that’s the case then my mind (already partially in a panic at the thought of this particular change above ALL ELSE) may well shut down entirely on Saturday.

Hopefully not internet. I rather like my mind the way it is…



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