On Friday evening the lightening flashed spectacularly and the thunder rolled to usher in our first spring rains. Only about 10mm fell but it was enough to exclaim, to whomever you met, the next morning, "We had rain, did you?" On Saturday evening another electric storm led to good showers; last night, soaking rain brought down this Masked Weaver's nest. I shall keep it for Joelle when she visits in November. She is a budding zoologist/entomologist! Mr Masked Weaver builds nests in a frenzy of activity; the Missus pulls them apart with equal energy until she finds one to her liking.
The hadeda ibis is so frequent a visitor to my garden that the dogs just ignore these prehistoric looking birds. They have glossy grey feathers and I call them my 'peacocks'. The call of the hadeda flying to and from roosts is one of the most familar calls in Africa: ha-ha-ha-dah-dah! I love the shrill sound over the thatch roof in the early morning.
So the year has its rhythms. Here in the Southern Hemisphere our commercial and school year runs in an orderly fashion from January to December. It is in December - Christmas time - as most call it, that schools close and folk take their long break. So as the sun rises earlier and sets later, we are all slowing down. I have finished my major academic writing projects for the year. Work will fill my in-basket and my in-mail till the day before Christmas but the worst pressure is off.
PS I want to recommend two attractive South African blogs for anyone who can manage yet another blogspot!!!! The Max Files shows the work of an excellent photographer situated in Port Elizabeth on the coast. My life in a picture is lyrical and lovely, like Claire, its author. I must also mention that the Internetional Award comes from the blog of a delightful 79 year lady in Poland at maria-pogaduski.blogspot.com.