Chickens Outnumber Humans 3 to 1 (Quick Links 105)

It’s been a very wet and windy start to the year, with the arrival of Storm Eleanor and a general period of unsettled weather. By and large we seem to have escaped the worst of the storms although we need see some rather high tides when walking the dogs at Portchester Castle (see above). The moat is normally dry but the high tide had pushed water most of the way around to a reasonable depth.

We had a little rodent visitor during the week. A little mouse found it’s way into my office, and although I tried to catch and release it back outside, Wilson caught and ate it before I had the chance.


A Slight Change to the layout of these posts. I thought I’d start to number these posts rather than use the date. Looking at the records in the admin part of my blog software there are 106 “Quick Links” entries, but two of these weren’t truly quick links so deducting those means that this one is Quick Links 105. I’ve also included something from one of the books I’ve been reading to add something unique to the post title. I’ll follow this layout for a while and see how it goes.


Work – It’s been a quiet return to work for me this week. Catching up with a few contacts and trying to get the ball rolling again. It seems as if quite a few people have elected to take the extra few days and don’t return until Monday 8th.


Allotment – The strong winds and accompanying rain have left the allotment a little bit the worst for wear, and exceedingly wet underfoot. I’ve had to resecure the netting over the brassica cage which had been blown open, but that’s about the worst of it.

As I’ve not been able to get on the plot, I’ve been making sure I’ve got all the seeds, plants etc. I need for the upcoming season. I’ve placed an order to fill some gaps.

I’ve also planted the remaining broad bean seeds that I had, so that I’ll hopefully have some extra plants to fill any gaps in the bed on the plot.


Currently Reading – I finished reading Kim Stanley Robinson’s “New York 2140” [GoodReads] on New Years Day, which means it’s technically the first book I’ve finished in 2018, even if I was reading it for most of the week before Christmas and up to New Year. It was good and very believable in terms of a potential future for New York with ice caps melted and sea level rise and the city becoming Venice like.

I followed that by reading “Adventures of a Young Naturalist: The Zoo Quest Expeditions”
by David Attenborough [GoodReads]. This very much reads like a Gerald Durrell adventure and is similar in many respects, but is a great read.

Following that I started reading “Tamed: Ten Species that Changed our World”
by Alice Roberts [GoodReads]. These latter two books where both Christmas presents from people who know me well, and the quote in the title of this post comes from this book. The ten species – dogs, wheat, cattle, Maize, Potatoes, Chickens, Rice, Horses, Apples, Humans – all seem to have interesting backstories and it’s entertainingly written.

I’ve set my Good Reads reading challenge to 3o books for 2018, a little bit higher than last year but not significantly so, and still quite a bit less than the number I eventually managed to read in 2017. It’s not really about the numbers for me, so I’m not sure why I bother with the challenge in this way, but I do like to keep track of what I have read.

The Sun Has Got His Hat On!

The sunshines on me today.


Temperatures between 16 & 18°C, blue sky and barely a cloud in sight. Sunglasses 😎 for the first time this year.

We went for a nice walk this afternoon. It’s my birthday, so no work for me today. Lots of butterflies about, loads of brimstones, plus a peacock and a comma. 

Lots of new books to read too, the only problem is knowing where to start!

Ghostly Aliens?

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As regular readers of this blog will know, one of my frequent daily dog walks is around the local derelict fort. It probably won’t come to anyone’s surprise that the area often attracts a lot of teenagers, particularly on summer evenings and at weekends. They’re mostly harmless, and I can’t say that I’ve ever had a problem or witnessed one beyond some littering and graffiti.

The graffiti is the usual sort of thing – tags, initials, you know what I mean. Recently though the alien ghosties pictured above have been appearing. I think they’re quite amusing, and they seem to setting a trail (but I won’t be following it). They’re placement is quite apt in the archways of the fort and is the kind of place you might expect to come across a ghost, although really it’s more likely to be a 19th Century soldier or a WWII anti-aircraft gunner, than a white sheet with antennae.

A Bonus Christmas Present


I had several books for Christmas presents this year, many were from my Amazon wish list. One had to be bought secondhand, as there wasn’t an “in-print” copy available. Unbeknown to both the giver and receiver (and also possibly the seller), is that this copy was signed. A bonus Christmas present.

Planning a Mini-Adventure

2016-05-17 13.08.38Work has been quiet this week, so I thought I’d take myself and the dogs off on a little trip perhaps tomorrow or Friday.

A few weeks ago we walked a very short bit of the Titchfield Canal, but looking at the map there’s an approx 4km round trip we can do. So the plan is, that if the weather stays reasonable, i.e. not too wet or too hot; we’re going to give that route a go. It looks to be fairly flat and not too taxing, so should be a good trip. Something different.