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It has been cold this week. I’m talking about -5c when I came downstairs at 5 o’clock. (Yes, I know it’s weird but I became an early riser due to circumstances beyond my control and now I love the peace of an early morning and having a front row seat for the start of a whole new day. Sunsets mark an ending, and while they’re beautiful, beginnings are more my scene.)

I don’t do well in cold weather so I’ve only managed street walks. and as I type this at 11.30 on Friday we still haven’t reached -1c in the garden. Luckily, all the plants I’ve bought as I renovated the garden are hardy down to -15c. I’m not so I’ve been indoors and writing and writing and writing, then researching and writing some more so I can now tell you that there are 2 Amy Hammond books in the works. Death By Misadventure, which is moving into the last stages and the new one, which is Crazy for Death.

Now I know what I’m researching and I’m really excited about it and have ideas for the next one as well. What's more, when the weather improves I have time ‘banked’ for lovely long walks to catch up. I've also been glued to the wildlife programme 'Winterwatch' which is coming from the Arne Peninsula, which I can see from Harbourside, just as I can see Brownsea Island and it’s amazed me to find how many creatures I take for granted are special. It’ll make me look at it in a different light, and treasure the memory of the day that I saw a Sika deer bouncing happily along the path before heading off to swim to Brownsea Island, where, if local lore is accurate and not embroidered because we love a tall story down here, a past owner introduced Sika deer without realising that they could swim and become invasive.

They’re small and cute, and our sea eagle is large and beautiful and all the other creatures I watch and love make my day. I’d like to share them with you, so here’s a link to iPlayer, because the Arne Peninsula isn’t that far from Windy Bay, at least in my imagination!

Which leads me on to today’s picture which is of a very self confident crow, who’d been catching molluscs and then dropping them onto the footpath to break them open before swooping back to collect them. The sneaky little soul has mastered the art of dropping them in front of cyclists so they run them over and open them for him.

Take care and stay warm (or cool if you're in the Southern Hemisphere) till we meet again.


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