Arrived at Cley in drizzly rain and found a reasonably comfortable place for the night.
Met Colin Miller, a local stone mason, who showed me the inside of Cley's church and told me something about the churches inhabitants - bats; three varieties. He also showed me Richard millington's stained glass window of the white-crowned sparrow.
Tuesday 23rd November
Photographed nancy's on the way to 'Coastguards', meeting Gary Haddon there. gary and his group are from the Isle of Wight and together we chatted and seawatched. Nothing new but good numbers of common scoter on the sea, with pintail, teal, wigeon and brents passing. Further out were a few auks and gannets and a couple of divers.
Retreated from the appalling weather to the lovely and warm Norfolk Ornithological Trust Centre nearby. News of a Hume's yellow-browed trapped at Holme. Should I go back. I decided to wait and see if it was seen again.
Instead cycled to Blakeney Quay and found the golden plover flock facing away from me some way out over the mud. No chance of seeing an American golden plover in this lot. Need a 'scope not bins. Heavy showers passed over during a three hour wait and from these I sheltered beneath an upturned boat nearby, lying down on the grass and almost falling asleep here. Did see a female hen harrier though.
At around 2.30pm the golden plover flock flew even further out and my chance of a new bird for the year disappeared with them.
Wednesday 24th November
Well my spine problem from last March has reoccurred and painfully I repeated the routine from yesterday, searching for the American golden plover whilst also searching for a possible pomarine skua on the sea.
Weather colder but less wind with heavy showers scooting through.
Once again no luck with either of the target birds but a couple of bearded tits were seen.
A big thank you to Sandra in the Centre for the painkillers. Should get me moving a bit better.
Met Richard and Hazel Millington in the church and jokingly blamed Richard for my [imaginary] woes. It was his book, A Twitcher's Diary' that inspires one to try to get 300 birds in a year. Brilliant book and hard to believe it was written 30 years ago.
Thursday 25th November
After a night watching[!] the First Ashes Test on the phone's internet, up and at them but missed a pomarine at Coastguards by 15 minutes.
Sheltered from a heavy snow and than hail storm but felt warm with my multi-layering. Cycled to Sheringham where I found that the youth hostel is closed to individuals. Most annoying as it doesn't state this on the internet. It just says that 'internet booking is not available'. Oh well, carry on Pres!
Right 24 days to go before I reach Sandy and it's going to be fun with the weather forecast for the next two weeks. Must stay positive.
Think I'll learn the 'Learning to Fly' song by Pink Floyd.
There's no sensation to compare with this. Suspended animation in a state of bliss.
can't keep my eyes from the circular skies. Tongue-tied and twisted just an earth bound misfit I.