And the mist came down again…

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It was the 1st July, and the West Highland summer continued in all its glory… There had scarcely been a single fine day since the middle of May, and as the temperature soared to a high of 14 degrees celsius (before wind chill), Algy clung on desperately to a tangle of honeysuckle in the driving Scotch mist, and wondered whether this “summer” would ever come to an end…

Algy sends you all lots of very damp fluffy hugs, and if you are one of his friends who suffer from excess heat in the summer months, he sends you an abundance of very cool, damp air xoxo

Algy is excited because it is St. Valentine’s Day and he has some beautiful red roses to give all his amazing friends on Tumblr. The wonderful thing about the Tumblrverse is that he can give roses to all his friends at once 🙂

Algy sends you all his love, and lots of very fluffy hugs from the wild and windy West Highlands of Scotland xoxo

Sea Fever

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The weather had changed and the day was bright, albeit with masses of grey clouds hurrying across the sky, but the wind was icy and much too strong for comfort, so Algy decided to spend some time looking back through his past adventures… and happened upon this GIF from early February two years ago, when conditions were evidently very similar…

And as the keen wind whistled through his feathers and froze the tip of his beak, Algy thought to himself:

I must go down to the seas again, for the call of the running tide
Is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied;
And all I ask is a windy day with the white clouds flying,
And the flung spray and the blown spume, and the sea-gulls crying.

[Algy is quoting the second verse of the famous poem Sea Fever by the early 20th century English poet John Masefield.]

At long last, there was a full day of sunshine – as full, that is, as was possible at this time of year, when the sun sank down behind the ridge at 3 o’clock. That was a noticeable advance on a few weeks ago, however, and Algy knew that every day now would be longer than the last… even when the sun didn’t shine! He found himself a perch in a young pine tree, and although the wind was bitterly cold, he sang a sunny song, as the other birds were doing, before the sun vanished behind the hill once again. Algy was fascinated to see that the notes of his song were coloured bright green and purple as they drifted away on the wind…

Algy wishes you all a happy weekend, and hopes that you will find a moment or two to sing a sunny song, even if the wind feels bitterly cold 🙂

The bitter northerly gale just blew and blew and blew, and although he was tucked well into the evergreen cypress hedge, Algy was battered and buffeted until he was completely dizzy. He held on to the branches as tightly as he could, rocking and swaying and shivering and shaking, but eventually he could hold on no longer, and as he lost his grip the entire world spun round and round.

Algy hopes that you will all have a calm and peaceful weekend 🙂

The northerly gale continued to roar across the Scottish Higlands, straight out of the arctic, bringing frequent biting showers of hurtling snow and icy hail. Algy took cover in an evergreen cypress hedge, but it only afforded a modicum of protection, and as his assistant took his photograph, Algy’s reproachful gaze reminded her that possibly a fluffy bird would rather be snuggled up with his fluffy friends in a nice warm place on such a day, instead of being obliged to pose for photos in the teeth of the gale…

As the weather forecast for the week ahead was grim, Algy decided to make the most of a brief spell of sunshine, and go for a wee ride in the birch tree while it was still relatively calm and comfortably dry. As he looked at the colours of the leaves around him, he felt that for once he had almost achieved a state of satisfactory camouflage, but unfortunately it could only last for as long as the leaves still clung to the tree, which would not be very long at all if the forecast was correct…

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The wind was relentless, and it was blowing sand everywhere. It wasn’t long before Algy’s eyes and beak and feathers and hair were all full of sand, so he shook himself off and retreated to the relative shelter of a clump of Marram grass growing in the middle of the beach. As he dug himself into a sand pocket, he watched the wind fill in the footprints of the sandpipers and other seabirds. It only took a few moments to erase their tracks across the beach, and it reminded Algy of a poem:

The wind stops, the wind begins.
The wind says stop, begin.

A sea shovel scrapes the sand floor.
The shovel changes, the floor changes.

The sandpipers, maybe they know.
Maybe a three-pointed foot can tell.
Maybe the fog moon they fly to, guesses.

The sandpipers cheep “Here” and get away.
Five of them fly and keep together flying.

Night hair of some sea woman
Curls on the sand when the sea leaves
The salt tide without a good-by.

Boxes on the beach are empty.
Shake ‘em and the nails loosen.
They have been somewhere.

[Algy is quoting the poem Sand Scribblings by the 20th century American poet Carl Sandburg.]

Severe gale warning… again!

Sometimes Algy wishes he lived somewhere that was maybe just a wee bit less windy – at least some of the time…

By the next morning, it was apparent that another autumn gale was on its way. The wind was already roaring through the trees, but Algy was determined to get some of those luscious red rowan berries before they were all blown away…