The rain had stopped about 10 minutes before I parked the car by The Cricketers pub. If I was going to pick a favorite tetrad it would be w. You can’t do it all in one go as like some of the others it straddles the river, but both sides feel like real countryside -trees, insects, birds; and for a good part of the time, few people. Most times I do the Bill Quay side as it is easier to get to.
I drop down to the trees that run north chasing the Tyne downstream. Its a mix of deciduous and pine trees that give a sense of going somewhere special. Right from the early days in January this is where I had planned to get ‘my’ rare bird; the one that would put the NZ26 challenge on the map.
Did I say I was an optimist by birth?
The still, Autumn, anticyclonic weather had given way to grey fog and light drizzle by the time I got there, but there were still many Yellow-browed Warblers in the North East.
Green was draining from the leaves and many lay on the ground. Bathed in a thin film of water no wind blew them away. Stuck to the pavement forming pools of colour with the light shining up not down. It reminded me of a painting of the surface of a pool I had once seen, but cannot remember the artist. As you looked at the shiny surface, you could pick out fish gliding beneath. And that’s how I saw these leaves.
I think this does justice to the magic of the bird that was not there.