20 July 2014

Blackberry Summer (or Fall)

We took a walk along the river yesterday. It was nice to be out there again after 2 1/2 weeks. My allergies kicked up a couple of week ago. It started with a burning throat and then the cough came and stuck around. As is usual when this happens, I was getting no more than 3 hours of broken sleep each night because I would doze off and then wake up having a coughing fit. I took myself off to the spare room and closed the door so Bill could get some sleep. In the day I would sit and cough. Movement led to more coughing, as did being outside with the pollen or mold or whatever the trigger was, so I wasn't going out for walks. I found myself wondering what the river walk looked like now--it's been changing as time passes--so I was glad to be out there again yesterday.

 Lots of the grasses were turning brown. Some kinds of flowers had bloomed and those blooms were spent and apparently not coming back. I guess their season has passed. The last time I walked along the river, yellow wildflowers dominated. Yesterday the thistles were in full bloom, the clover was still flowering and small purple flowers dominated, with just a few small yellow ones scattered here and there.

The blackberry bushes now have actual berries on them. These are small, hard, and green, but we will keep an eye on their progress. They are still in heavy bloom as well, so it seems that there may be quite a lot of them. I assume that people come out and pick them regularly as they ripen, but there are blackberry bushes everywhere around town, so I'm hoping that we will be able to get some. I am not sure when that happens around here, but since we are out and about all the time, we'll be able to monitor the situation.

A little further on, we saw the cows having a drink from the river.
We've been stopping regularly at the same spot where there is a constructed waterfall in order to observe the changes there. Lots of vegetation has grown up and the water level has gone down, so rocks and islands are visible in the river past the fall where they weren't before. Less water is flowing down the fall, too, so now the shape of it can be seen. It's an interesting shape, with the stair step effect. The birds like it, too--gives them a place to perch and survey the territory!

One of these birds was there looking one way when we walked by the first time and on the way back there was a different bird looking in the opposite direction.

When we reached the bridge by the old barrack ruin, we heard a "baaaa." and looked up and across the river to see some sheep in the field above the stone wall.
My cough has eased up with only a few bouts of coughing throughout the day now and those are not as fierce as they were--for which I am grateful. It feels good to be able to go out and walk around again. I've missed it--especially the walks along the river. I will be curious to see how things continue to change with the seasons.




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