Particularly Relevant to the Beautiful People.
Perhaps overdoing it on the Take-Opportunity-To-Get-Away-And-Relax-Goddamit-Relax front, my return from the north east was but a stepping stone to a dive south (just don't even go there, sniggerers).
On Saturday morning, I took breakfast at Pembroke Lodge in Richmond Park - with its leafy green outlook to the west. Deftly egg-dipping a hash brown, I was roused by an unusual bird call. And thus, I spotted - clear as the blue sky - my first ever wild ring-necked parakeet. There were many of them. And later, a trio came and perched in the tree of a property next door to where I was staying.
It's good when the Red Deer faces competition for my weekly 'Most Favourite Bit of Nature' prize.
Other observation, of human nature: In the cosmopolitan centres - Manchester, London, Stoke-on-Trent, it is easy to feel surrounded by the body beautiful. On fine sunny days, the work that goes into the body beautiful is there to be seen - the doggedly determined clomping round the park, the gritty extra lap on the 21-speed racer, the comedy of the power walk. Maybe it's because much in their lives is taut, and edgy, and competitive, and all a bit brow-furrowing, but a lot of these Body Beauties look like they ought to relax a bit. Look at the ring-necked parakeet or the red deer, their's are paces that seem to be much more well-adjusted - culturally-speaking.
I'm also liking deadwood - it's likely to be a contender for this week's prize. Never to be overlooked, though, is the mid-evening goldfinch rhapsody.