Saturday, August 26, 2006

The hedge is chopped!

Trefor and his workmates were back again yesterday morning. I took this photo just as they started work.

The field as the final phase of work on the hedge begins

And this is what the field looks like now they've finished. I suspect the owners of the houses at the bottom of the field won't be too happy with the result, but I am ecstatic - I can actually see boats on the sea again, been watching four of the Seabirds out racing this afternoon.

And now the work is finished!

I had completely forgotton what the "proper" view was like. It's strange to see the sudden fall away of the ground, with my vestibular problem I feel almost as if I'm going to fall down the field and straight into the sea if I don't hang on to something!

It's going to be great watching the racing next year (hope the trees don't grow back too quickly!). I didn't get to see any of the starts or finishes this year as the only way I could see that far was to climb the steps in the hedge... And I've had too many falls off those steps to want to risk that unless John builds me some sort of hand rail.

Friday, August 25, 2006

The Abersoch Chainsaw Hedgeacre

This is what the bottom of the field looked like yesterday morning.

The Abersoch Chainsaw Hedgeacre 1

Yesterday they came and began to top the trees. Began by taking off all the lower side branches, then a chap with a chainsaw got into the bucket on the front of the tractor and was lifted up to cut off the higher branches. They are leaving them around 7 foot high (at a guess) which is just an amazing improvement.

I took a stroll down to the bottom of the field (well, more of a slow stagger actually!) to take the rubbish down to the bins. Took my camera too, so here's some close up shots of the work in progress.

The Abersoch Chainsaw Hedgeacre 3

The Abersoch Chainsaw Hedgeacre 4

The Abersoch Chainsaw Hedgeacre 6

By the time they'd finished in the evening the whole of this side of the trees had been lopped down, and they'd started on the lower field.

Hedge in the evening

The difference really is amazing. Can actually see the Moorings from the field now. How I wish this had been done 3 weeks ago so I could have followed the Seabird races. Ah well, lets hope the trees haven't grown up too much by this time next year.

The Rivals

As I was getting ready to barbie in the evening I heard a strange sound in the sky, and looked up to see the motor-parachute again. A very strange vehicle! The driver? pilot? has a motor with a big fan behind him, rather like the ones you get on those boats in the Florida Everglades, though possible not quite as big.

Two fliers

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

Abersoch days

Peacock butterfly

Quick update - spent some time at the caravan earlier in the summer, then went back home for a family party, meant to get back sooner than I managed, but even so had a week to prepare before John began his 3 weeks holiday here in Abersoch. I was in Liverpool for much of the hottest weather, but our kind neighbour Marie here at the caravan watered the tomatoes, beans and sweet peas for me. Lot of rabbit damage - it's a bad year for bunnies!

Most of the caravan guests (Sarah, David and Rachel) left on Sunday, John went soon after 4am Monday morning to drive back to Liverpool. It seems very quiet here now! Bit of a strange holiday this year, with John driving back to Liverpool twice to see his Mum who was admitted to hospital for an emergency operation 7 August if my memory serves me right. She's in a convalescent home now and is doing OK, hopefully will be home in a week or so.

Tortoiseshell butterfly

Monday had some nice sunshine, spotted two hummingbird hawk moths on the buddleia shortly after midday, they hung around long enough for me to get out the camcorder and try get some better shots (not had time yet to look and see if they are better though!) than those from the camera a week or so ago. The painted lady was back too, got one decentish shot on the osteospermum, but when I tried to get closer to it on the buddleia it took fright and flew off - seems very alert and shy. Buddleia is generally covered in butterflies every time the sun shows even slightly - small tortoiseshells are the most frequent visitors, but there's a single peacock as well as the red admirals, large and small whites and commas. No wonder it's called the Butterfly bush!

Painted Lady on the patio

Around 6.15pm there were clouds of smoke went up from close by, followed shortly by NeeNaa sounds. Today I finally went and checked out the Abersoch website, where I discovered that a motor boat caught fire and exploded just off our local (Marchroes) beach. Fortunately everyone onboard escaped, but the boat was completely destroyed.

Yesterday morning Trefor arrived and began to strim the bracken at the bottom of the field where it had escaped through the fence. Then he pulled out a couple of posts... He called in at Rolf's (across the field from us), the pair of them walked up into the field behind us, and I caught them on the way back. The fence is coming out, and the trees at the bottom of the field will be cut back later this week or early next week - Hurray!

I think I saw the hummingbird hawk moth again briefly in the morning, but there are some other fast and fluttery moths around the buddleia too. Though these land on the flowers to feed. So I may have confused one of them, but the hawk moth looks pinkish in the blur of its wings, and its bum looks a bit like a miniature skull, so I'm fairly sure that I spotted one.


Soon after midday today Trefor came back with a blue tractor and trailer, and hoisted the remaining fence posts out of the ground, loading them into the trailer. Then he collected up the bracken strimmings, along with all the garden rubbish that had been chucked over the (ex) fence, dumping it all in the bottom field. Will take a look tomorrow if it's dry as I need to take a bag of rubbish to the bins (that grey breeze-block thing just below the white bungalow on the right in the picture).

It's nice to see the fence go, and I can't wait for the trees to be topped - can hardly see any of the bay this year, only spotted the Seabirds racing once. Hopefully the trees at the back of the field will get chopped soon too, as they are a home to a ginormous flock of starlings in the autumn which makes a lot of mess for the folks who back on to them.

Red Admiral on Buddleia