Thursday, 23 February 2012

Eve of Destruction - Barry McGuire

In an effort to catch up........

Waiting on Weymouth seafront for the National Express coach was a series of goodbyes as about 6 people I know passed by chance. In addition fellow birders Paul and Jill Rendell were also travelling to Heathrow Airport to begin their trip to Colombia, South America.

At the airport things started rather on the wrong foot as it was deemed my bag was overweight (how much do 2 pairs of socks and a T-shirt weight?) for cabin baggage, but seeing I was a little miffed the Air China Supervisor stepped in to help. Suggesting that if I had another bag it would be OK to decant equal amounts of kit into 2 bags as long as neither exceeded 5Kgs, no problem. This was indeed a lovely lady and certainly up for a bit of a laugh, so that’s just what we did. As a result she asked which seat I had been allocated and said “we can do much better than that”! Changing me to the aisle seat in the front row and ‘blocking’ the window seat that was me all the way to Beijing and it is true to say the cabin service was fantastic. A beer and a Great Wall wine or 2 with dinner was all it needed to have me asleep for much of the journey. The security in China was a little OTT, but guess they have a job to do plus there were a couple of hours to kill before the connection to Incheon,

South Korea.

Today was really utilised to refresh my memory on directions and places and take a look around to see how much had changed from the last trip. In doing I decided it would be best to settle on Yeongiongdo Island for a couple of days being both easy access to all parts and, if not destroyed the place with most mud flats.

Despite that there were to be some birds with most escaping the lens, but not t5he first of these, directly outside the hotel, an Eastern Great Tit (Parus minor).

This must have been seen before given the numbers here, but maybe it had been overlooked or not 'split' at that time. Whichever, it's a World Lifer, a good start.

Also in good numbers and seemingly building nests all around the city,

the same Magpie that we get at home (Pica pica).

A 40 minute bus ride from hotel, situated in he south east corner of the island and close to the airport, took me to Yeongoonglo Quay where from the window the amount of building could be seen.

All in the name of new blocks of flats, hundreds of them.

Try walking across a major construction site in UK and you won't last long, but here I was just

called over, given a cup of coffee then allowed to proceed.

Even as I past this digger the driver stopped work, nodded a shallow bow and let me pass in safety.

Unfortunately, his task was reclaiming yet another section of foreshore, this time only a 'postage stamp' but so much has been decimated over the last few years.

The finished article.

Gone too are the rows and rows of 'open' fish stalls now all under caver of plastic sheeting and all duel funtioning as cafes.

Flatfish, Round Fish, Shellfish you name it.

More new-found friends Suki is Korean while Larry hails from Hawaii.

Your Chariot awaits,

222 service back to the hotel door.

It will doubtless be noticed, more by some than others, that the 'Spell Check' is not functioning. Don't know if this is chance of location or just another, annoying quirk of this small lap-top. Any how there will now be plenty of spelling mistakes!