This is my third image from my encounter with this dear little blackcap. After feeding and cleaning it’s beak, it hopped up into the branches of the shrubs, in the the riverside hedgerow, to preen. Some of those feathers are still quite downy and the gape (oral flanges) in the corners of the beak are clear to see. I have no idea exactly how old this fledgeling is but it certainly seems to be fending for itself well! The brambles were providing a feast for bees, butterflies and birds. My mum might just have sneaked a few ripe berries for herself too!
“Eventually, all things merge into one, and a river runs through it. The river was cut by the world’s great flood and runs over rocks from the basement of time. On some of the rocks are timeless raindrops. Under the rocks are the words, and some of the words are theirs.
I am haunted by waters.”
― Norman Maclean, A River Runs Through It and Other Stories
Also part of WPC: A Good Match. The quote just came straight to mind as I looked down the Thames toward Canary Wharf. It seemed the perfect match!
Boundaries and borders are made for crossing! Bridges, fords and tunnels are the most common ways of traversing a river. The Stepping Stones on the River Mole at the base of Box Hill are part of a National Trust walking route around the hill, designated an Area Of Outstanding Natural Beauty in The Surrey Hills. I grew up in the area and we walked around Box Hill many times as children, always delighting in crossing the stones! Rivers have always been natural boundaries within the landscape but the waters around the stones are actually very shallow. Children go barefoot through the waters, often with a net for catching small fish, newts and larvae in the shallows of the river. It’s always made me laugh that during the Second World War authorities actually removed the stones in case of an invasion! They were replaced in 1946 and are still enjoyed by walkers of all ages today.
I had to get past a few of my own limitations to get these photos for you. My mobility is very poor and I usually go out in my electric wheelchair to explore the landscape, nature and local wildlife. Obviously the Stepping Stones aren’t exactly wheelchair accessible! Fortunately they are very close to a carpark just off the main road to Dorking. I’m also fortunate to have a Simon who loves coming out with me and enabling me to do photography projects that would be impossible on my own! He helped me down into the water and then passed my camera and tripod down to me so I could find some good views of the stones. I was in my wellies and didn’t have a problem with my early shots. I really wanted to get views from a number of aspects to show the beauty of the river and the surrounding woodland. There are several things that I learned! 1: If you crouch to adjust your tripod you will get a wet backside. 2: Dogs do not understand the concept of waiting for the stupid photographer to complete a long exposure. 3: Just because you remember the river being shallow enough to cross near the stones doesn’t mean that it’s the same depth either side. 4: Wellies that are full of water are very hard to get off!
What does angular mean to me? Only my favourite building in the whole of London! The Shard. I’m drawn to this building in ways I can’t fully explain. I was never really a fan of modern architecture. Some have intrigued me, others disgusted me, many have amused me but The Shard fascinates me. I’ve really enjoyed processing my photographs, the building lends itself perfectly to artistic interpretations!
Its angular design, sleek lines and sharp edges, seem more like a sculpture to me than a building. It has an intrinsic beauty from every aspect that just cries out to be photographed! I can’t resist it. I’ve been up to the viewing platforms several times now and I hope to get back up there soon to capture some night views of the city. The Views from The Shard really are the icing on the cake!
I delayed posting for the challenge this week, as I had another trip to hospital in London yesterday giving me the opportunity to see some fresh angles of The Shard. All my earlier images are from the south of The Thames so I ventured over to the north bank of the river by The Tower of London to get a different vantage point. Everyone seemed to be drawn to the riverside to gaze upon this masterpiece of architecture and construction!
I’m in London again tomorrow at St Thomas’ Hospital. At the back of the hospital by the gardens you will find what I have always thought to be the best view of the Palace of Westminster! I love looking across the Thames to see this beautiful building, framed by the trees and stone walls. The weather is looking rather unpredictable for the afternoon so whether I can get any more photography done, well we’ll just have to wait and see!