Wow, it’s been a long time since I last blogged. Guess I better bring you all up to speed ‘eh? Are you sitting comfortably? Then I shall begin….
Since March I’ve been very busy with my volunteer work with the Hawk and Owl Trust. I am doing a lot of Family Days and School Days at the moment. I love working with kids and I love spreading the conservation message so combining the two is perfect for me.
The biggest things I’ve done on these lines were ‘Avalon 24’, a 24-hour wildlife extravaganza based on the Somerset Levels, and ‘Bristol Festival of Nature’. Avalon 24 was fantastic – Moths at Midnight, Owl Prowls at 2am and Bumble Bees before Breakfast!
The days I did at the Festival of Nature were split between Bristol Natural History Consortium on the Saturday and Hawk and Owl Trust on the Sunday. Of course it all caught up with me and I spent several days in varying states of wreckage but it was so, so worth it . In July I have a ‘Countryside Day’ coming up at a local show ground that involves guiding over 1000 school children in various tasks throughout the day. A glutton for punishment? Moi? Haha.
Last Thursday I did a ‘Schools Day’ at Avalon Marshes Visitor Centre, which was wonderful and tiring, dissecting Owl Pellets with lots of school children! After they’d gone home I went with another volunteer from the Trust onto the adjacent nature reserve where we saw Grebe, Cormorant, Swan and the jackpot – a Great White Egret which has nested in the UK for the first time ever!
There’s some other exciting stuff coming up with the Trust but there are I’s to be dotted and T’s to be crossed before I can say too much on that subject ;).
In June I went to Cheltenham to see Naturalist and Adventurer Steve Backshall deliver a lecture as part of a Nationwide tour to promote his first work of fiction for children, ‘Tiger Wars’. He was very funny and interesting, and ‘Tiger Wars’ is a fantastic book! It’s written for ages 12+ but it’s very readable for adults too. I’m going to see him again in July, along with another Naturalist called Nick Baker. They’re doing a show at Exeter Corn Exchange in aid of a Charity called Wild Aid. Their mission is ‘to end the illegal wildlife trade in our lifetimes by reducing demand through public awareness campaigns and providing comprehensive marine protection’. The banter between these two is priceless so it promises to be a very funny and informative afternoon.
My big, big news is that I’m very, very close to getting my ‘Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle’. So far I’ve tried a Citroen Berlingo, which wasn’t quite right for me, and next I’m trying a WAV called the ‘Peugeot Impulse‘ based on the Peugeot Bipper Teepee. I’ll let you know how it goes. I’m actually writing a diary about the process and it will appear on ‘Disability Horizons’ the lifestyle magazine that I’m a sub-editor on so watch out for that ;).
I think that’s about all my news for now. I haven’t been getting as much exercise as I like to due to the spectacularly crappy weather we’re having. Soon as there’s something worth blogging about, I’ll let you know.