Frogs, for a different reason

Wednesday July 28, 2004

This was my day for resting up and treating my case of the bloats with the attention it deserves. The medication and diet is simple and, like as not, universal; the mechanics of the result are too indelicate to think about, the relief, however, is infinite. Suddenly I feel like Hercules unchained.

The camera didn’t come today. We didn’t really think that it would. However, late in the evening, Graham checked the Amazon.co.uk website and was informed that the package had been despatched. Should be here tomorrow. Or the day after. I’m hoping it’ll be in my sticky little mits ready for a good work-out by the weekend. I fancy starting a new month with a new toy.

I spent far too much time wrestling with ebay.co.uk and with paypal.uk, getting ready to sell the old Nikon, and some other bits and pieces, too. I got the ebay side set up after a struggle; paypal doesn’t give in so easily. I got about two-thirds through the process when my cocyx gave me clear instructions to desist for the day. I’ll finish it off tomorrow. Why these things have to be so complicated, and their web sites so poorly organized, I don’t know. And I suspect that, in my efforts to navigate my way through the tutorials, the helps, the informations and the forms, I’ve picked up some adware that I really don’t want on my computer. So that’s another job for tomorrow.

Graham recently bought a copy of MacAfee (or however you capitalize it) for his computer and has found, once it’s tamed and told what to do and what not to do, that it’s a much easier and less intrusive package than Norton, and far more inclusive. I have to run SpyBot and AdAware separately from my Norton suite to get the same result he does with MacAfee simply running in the background and on a schedule. I’ve hinted that a copy would fill my birthday wish list more than adequately. Currently, Norton’s firewall is invisibly preventing me from running my ftp program—the one I’ve been using without bother for some years now—so I have to disable the thing while I’m uploading. Which is less than satisfactory.

It was a little too hot and humid to make a bike ride attractive so, in the fading light, I took a very gentle stroll by the side of the drain. I’d half-expected to have to back away quickly from the hordes of midges that tend to rise in the evening but, for whatever reason, they were absent. Perhaps they were off on a bite fest with the grockles staying in the cottages close by, saving us locals for an autumn feast when the holiday season ends.

The lilypads are almost obscuring the surface of the water now, and I’ve seen the dredging machines working towards us, so I particularly wanted to see the display before they’re pulled out and left on the river bank to compost away. When that happens the midges really will come out to play and, for a couple of weeks, the walk along the bank will be a no-go area.

For the moment, though, the masses of round leaves and small, insignificant yellow flowers are a joy to behold. The season’s crop of frogs like them, too, and if you should leave your walk until just after dark, their chorus is a wonder. On a really quiet evening I can hear them across the two large fields that separate us from the drain. The herons are returning, so quietly and unobtrusively you could easily miss their arrival. I’m sure they like the frogs, too, for a different and completely unmusical reason.

So. Not a remarkable day and, were it not for the lily pads, the frogs, and the reversion of my tummy to its normal state where it feels like a nice squishy water bed rather than an over-tauntened drum-skin, there’d be little to remember it by.

Stickford, Jun,'04

on the shaded river
massed lilypads
waiting for frogs

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