Covid-19 put an end to many of my birding trips. I have had to accept that many of the harmless activities that kept me in a good mental state are now against Government guidance. I am used to travelling by public transport (often with friends) on day trips to interesting places such as the Kent … Continue reading Lockdown in Croydon
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I used this phrase when talking to a friend. I was surprised that I'd said this because birding is normally enjoyable. But I have experienced some problems with my hobby. It's important that I work out a way to cope with these, because if birding turns against me then my mental health is at risk … Continue reading Birdwatching is difficult
I did this walk along the Thames Estuary on a unexpectedly free Sunday. Somehow that made it even more rewarding. As on most of my Estuary walks, the weather stayed appropriately grey. I started at Erith on the southern bank of the river. Its long pier was a reminder of its time as a Thames-side … Continue reading Erith, Crossness and some helpful ponies
In March I had a challenging week at work, partly because of Brexit and also because of worries about colleagues or their relatives being ill. I spent the whole week looking forward to walking at the weekend. I chose one of my favourite routes, along the Thames from Rainham to Purfleet in Essex. The RSPB … Continue reading Walking the Thames to Rainham Marshes
I'm less keen than most people on the approach of Spring. The gentle temperatures of early April turn into the hot, humid weather of a London summer. But, in spite of my pessimism about the change of seasons, I enjoyed visiting Regent's Park in central London in March. There were plenty of signs of the … Continue reading Listening to Birds in Regent’s Park
The word 'isolation' has many different meanings. It can be a neutral geographical term. For example, Tristan da Cunha in the South Atlantic is regarded as the world's most isolated island. But it can also have a negative connotation, such as when an individual person is isolated from society. A few weeks ago I felt … Continue reading Positive isolation
A few months ago I wrote about my trip to Shetland in August 2018 in late September I went even further north to Iceland. It was a family trip, kindly organised by my sister. Our first impression was how cold it was! Leaving the mild autumn in Britain for the cold winds of Iceland was … Continue reading Iceland
What is is like to feel different? Many people who have been afflicted by mental health problems feel that they are isolated. If someone has never experienced depression, it's difficult to understand the everlasting low moods of someone who suffers. If you are affected by social anxiety, then only you can understand why it's completely … Continue reading Being different
Ampm around 325BC the Greek geographer and explorer Pytheas made a remarkable voyage to Northern Europe. Although his account hasn't survived, it appears that he navigated round the British coastline and then sailed further north to encounter Arctic ice and the midnight sun. Pytheas used the word 'Thule' to name a distant land he visited. … Continue reading A week in Shetland
I have become obsessed with birds. Often it is difficult for me to think about anything else, and I feel bitter when life forces me to do so. I expect everyone else to take an interest in birds too. I assume that all my friends will be interested in listening to me talking about them. … Continue reading Obsessed?