My welcome home was as good as anyone could want, a couple of pints of room temperature cider and great cackle with Bowie & Sheila just did the trick. Since my departure, they had returned from South Africa, Mozambique and Lesotho so our conversation was mixed and varied, and I thank them for their hospitality. I managed to 'escape' a little before mid-night to return home and remind the neighbour that I'm still alive, well and very much into Joe Bonamassa. Two tracks were enough to send me to bed happy, Django, and the superlative Ballard of John Henry. Here, I'd just like to do an advert, I'm going to buy my ticket to see / hear the best guitarist I've discovered in a decade, in the very near future. This visit to the Bournemouth International Center could only be enhanced by any of you who wish to join me. By the end of next week I hope to have secured my seat, if you want to be sat beside me give me a bell or miss out. The invitation is open for a week - please come!
The first day at home didn't quite pan out the way I had intended. Having been deprived so long of any decent 'birding' I was anxious to get to my local patch, Radipole and/or Lodmoor and kick off the GB year list. There was also the consideration of sorting mail, bills, bank etc but there was also a few people who expected me to appear at our favourite daytime haunt DJ Weatherspoon's pub, the Swan. The latter won the day, and after sorting out one or two not too important issues I headed for the pub.
To see all those lovely faces again was enhanced by the South West TV crew being there to promote what has to be one of the finest pubs in the land, and the 4 members of staff who are pregnant. Nothing to do with me I can report! Returning home, I had several telephone conversation with friends who take no prisoners when it comes to constructive criticism, and I got that from the hip. On one hand there was suggestion that my text is a little strung out and rambling, which I consider fair, and will make best effort to adjust. There were those who simply liked the documentary, and those who praised my enthusiasm and verve for life. When the latter stops you'll know I'm dead - but you better warn the angels I'm on my way. Tomorrow, the rambling stops and some serious birding begins, so have your car keys ready - The Boy Is Back In Town! Thanks for you support.
In addition, I have promised some of my new found South American acquaintances an introduction to English birds, hopefully I'll fulfill that with a few photographs in the next few days.
Ted King and his lovely lady Vera Powell left and Val & Alam Watts seriosly good mates.