I took a photo of the mortal remains of the moon for you, and wondered if we would ever see the moon again!
July 12... Happily, the moon appears to be growing back. The night was so clear that a pale ghost of the moon in shadow was clearly visible as well, complete with the "sea" and "land" areas showing.
Anyway, now you have it, the moon as it appears from our side of the world... What does the moon look like from where you live??
I have been taking more photos.
I am often more interested in texture, pattern and light than portraying a place or something with a name.
When I went for a short walk beside the lagoon one morning recently, I found there was a thin skiff of ice on the water. I loved how the light played upon it.
The ice had recorded the movement of something that had passed over or under it as the ice was freezing. The pattern of broken ice and frozen bubbles reminded me of an encounter I had a few days before.
I had been standing on a road bridge looking at the water below it, when I became aware of a movement and a splash. 10 or 15 seconds later, there was another sound and a large bird popped up out of the water and fluttered ashore.
The bird settled on a muddy rock.
I stood quite still, and the bird and I studied one another. The day was pleasant, the sun warm, and the bird had wet feathers. The bird decided that I was less of a threat to it than the prospect of catching double pneumonia, so it half opened its wings and dried off.
Once it was sufficiently restored, the bird made ready for another swim.
The bird assumed a position like a diver on a diving board,
and dived cleanly into the water.
The bird would spend a short time on the surface, than abruptly disappear into the murky depths.
It was surprising how far and how fast the bird could travel under water. In time I became fairly good at estimating where it would resurface, as I could usually spot a line of small bubbles that marked the progress of my submerged friend.
Mostly the bird bobbed up looking like it had failed to catch anything.
But its persistence paid off, and I did see it rise with something that may have been a small eel in its beak.
Later the bird was joined by a friend, and I was treated to the sight of both of them fishing.
The second bird decided that it too needed to dry off, and it did me the great favour of choosing a rock right below where I was standing on the bridge, so we ended up eight or ten feet apart at the most.
What sort of birds were they?
Well, I am no expert, so I did not know what the birds were until I got home and did some research. My bird books were no help at all as they illustrated only the adult version, and it transpired that the juvenile and adult stages of this bird are dramatically different. So I did a search on line, and found a really excellent site for New Zealand birds, http://nzbirdsonline.org.nz
(If you like birds and haven't yet visited this site about New Zealand birds, please do). On this site was my answer, the birds were a pair of juvenile Spotted Shags (Stictocarbo punctatus). Here is a photo from nz birds online of the adult Spotted Shag, and you will see why I was confused..
|Adult Spotted Shag (photo: nzbirdsonline.org.nz)|
July 14... As I write this on Sunday morning, there is some "thick" looking rain falling, softened by the occasional large flake of snow. The hills near to us have a chilly capping of the white stuff, and it really does look like winter out there. Low grey clouds cover the sky, and trees huddle in miserable groups with backs arched and shoulders pulled in. Yet, twenty four hours ago it was sunny and clear, without so much of a hint of what we are getting today...
Ha, Ha, now it is Sunday afternoon and sunny, how quickly things can change!
Some of you have kindly been concerned about my back and have been sending encouraging words. Thank you for that, it has been much appreciated. This has been a long process, and I am still not working in my pottery studio. I have been benefiting from regular physiotherapy, and have started making measurable progress. The back feels much stronger and more flexible again. I can sit for more respectable amounts of time now, and have been able to visit friends and be more sociable. Not long ago I was mostly confined to home as even short trips anywhere in a vehicle were a problem. Simply being able to get out and socialize a bit, does wonders for the spirits. So, I am on the mend. The return to actual work will be slow and careful, but I can see it as something achievable.