I could not get a photo of the big peacock-coloured beetle. He spent all his time negotiating the grass and falling over at almost every blade. He must have been used to it because he flipped himself over and just carried on.
Hawthorn was watching a moth which had got caught inside the double glazing, so he couldn’t get to it, but he spent a long time watching and trying, bless him.
Like a battlefield – you could almost see people picking through bodies looking for coins. It seemed strewn with sadness
The new leaves have come out next to the pussy willow which now look like they are bursting with excitement at the feel of the sun.
As I stand facing the rising sun to do my morning exercises, the sunshine gleams through the dandelion leaves at foot level.
The bus passes through mile after mile of forest with the longest straightest tracks dissecting them. Some are dense pine and others are deciduous, more spacious with a matching green floor. Occasionally they have been cleared for agricultural purposes (in the centre of one huge one were 2 storks lazily pecking), or for motorbike racing.
I am picking up a few words of the notoriously difficult Estonian language : thank you sounds like aita; tee is street without the s, r and second t; kohvik is coffee shop ; kool is school – you can see why I know those ones!
All those trees mean that of course the main house building material is wood and they are usually painted beautiful colours which shine in the evening sun.
Disclaimer: the sky really was that blue – it wasn’t a fancy camera filter!
I travelled to Riga in Latvia (one of the 3 Baltic States) by plane from Edinburgh, arriving late on Thursday night.
I took 22 bus from the airport to the centre and walked through the underpass to the Wicked Weasal Hostel which I highly recommend. It is clean and the staff are really friendly. I was offered a free beer and there’s tea (including green) and coffee in the well stocked kitchen. I was in a shared dorm with a Spanish soldier and ended up reviving my Spanish until late at night as we swapped life stories!
I stayed less than 12 hours so have very few photos to show for it. On the way out I passed the astonishing golden domes of the Riga Nativity of Christ (Russian Orthodox) Cathedral, and the statue of Rainis (Janis Plieksans, a famour Latvian poet, playwright, translator and politician in the Riga Esplanade park.
I took two buses that day – one to Pärnu along the main highway, and the other which doubled back south for some of the way and then headed slightly inland to Massiaru – four hours in total.
Every day I walk for a couple of hours – on the first day to the south, then to the north, the west and east. The roads are straight and wide, some dary grey tarmacked and some stony and pale apricot. It is monotonous walking – mentally relaxing.
Standing amongst them
The patience of trees
The forebearance of trees
The pure being of trees
Do you think the birds tickle them?
I find a sunny place in the mornings to do my swinging exercises, T’ai Chi and to ‘Stand Like a Tree’ (a chi gung exercise) for my general health and to counteract the 6-7 hours a day of cerebral work writing hours at my laptop.
I sit in the sun to have my lunch, topping up my vitamin D levels after the Scottish winter. In contrast to my trips to Spain in previous years, I have gone back in time coming here, leaving the Spring behind me, but it is getting warmer every day and the plants are shooting nicely.