It was a bit of a peachy day in Orkney yesterday. Whisper it quietly but, after the morning's haar had burnt off, the sun shone brightly and temperatures reached the dizzy heights of... eighteen degrees. Predictably, the day's work was indoors, but by late afternoon I was home and able to change into a pair of shorts. I know!
When Our Lass arrived home, we sat out in the garden, enjoying a cuppa, shelling peas and watching the wildlifey goings on. A family of Pied Wagtails were scurrying about the lawn and dry stone wall, searching for small flies and the like, whilst Swallows twittered overhead, as they gathered insects on the wing.
Suddenly, I was shaken from this reverie by the sight of a 'different' Swallow. Hmmm, that looked larger... and darker... yes, there's another one... and another! We watched entranced as three Swifts joined in the melee of birds wheeling and swooping through the air, seemingly effortlessly catching their prey as they zoomed about the sky. The Swifts were likely on their southward Autumn migration, but they were the first ones we had seen in Orkney this year, as the species does not breed in the county.
Whilst we gazed up into the blue, a flock of Golden Plover went by, headed for rougher pastures on the moorland to the north west, and the occasional call of a distant Curlew came to us through the still air.
Eventually, this food for the soul gave way to a slightly more corporeal need and we headed indoors to see what the fridge might have to offer in the way of an accompaniment to fresh peas.