'I'm always looking for the Hows and the Whys and the Whats,' said Muskrat, 'That is why I speak as I do. You've heard of Muskrat's Much-in-Little, of course?'
'No,' said the child. 'What is it?'
- The Mouse and his Child. Russell Hoban.

Go here to find out more.

Tuesday, 30 December 2008

A morning story.

I woke up in my little house to the sound of the rain stopped. Perhaps you know how it is, when it's been noisy all night on the tin roof, and the silence is odd. The chooks were grizzling and wanted to be let out so, out of respect for the guests in the house, I did that. Then they grizzled because they've run out of bugs, they've turned the piece of ground over so thoroughly, so I pointed to the full feeder and the dumb clucks said "Oh! Great!" as if they'd never seen it before, and rushed over with that loose-bloomered run they have.

On the way past the palm, I noticed the wind and rain had blown the baby thrush out onto the ground. It was completely wet and lifeless, so I picked it up and was morbidly fascinated to feel it move in my palm and open its eyes. Quite cold 'though. Not a good sign. Still, as usual, I had a vision of it revived and eagerly receiving egg-and-bread from my maternal hand, so brought it inside, dried it with the hair-dryer and wrapped it in a flannel and set it on a hot water bottle. You never know. I've always done this since I was able to walk. I never seem to be discouraged by about a 0.1% success rate.

Shelly was leaping around like a loony waiting for her walk, so I took the lead and camera and headed off through the mist and air so thick and warm you could drink it and call it Horlicks.

The Park was damp and soggy, the dawn redwoods and willows bent down to the ground with droplets, and every blade of grass be-dropped to capacity - not a breath of wind stirring a leaf.

The willows dripped into the river that swirled brownly beneath them.

Futher on I was amazed to see patches of dull white in the grass. Surely not mushrooms this time of year, but yes! It was. I collected a nice number and put them in my jacket.

And then, as if this cornucopia weren't enough, I spotted a red onion plant that someone had randomly thrown over their fence. Nothing wrong with it, so I picked it up. It will go nicely with my mushers for breakfast!

So now I sit typing and they are all sizzling and smelling buttery and delicious with some added slices of the Christmas ham. Enough for a good breakfast for me and a guest if one gets up before I polish them all off.

Update: I found another thrush baby under the oak, warm, dry and very keen to eat. It has had half an egg yolk already.


  1. Thanks for capturing in words the details of your morning walk - nice to read on a MONDAY night when I've just got back from the pub quiz at "The Prince of Wales". When are we going to get to know what those weird fruits were?

  2. Hi Katherine, I love your blog, such beautiful pictures and words. I wanted to say also how nice it was what you wrote on Val's, i just came over from there.
    We have much in common it seems, I am 52 also, love to kayak and love New Zealand! i'm sure theres more, and i'll be back to find out!
    xx Lori

  3. What a lovely post. I feel as if I were on the walk with you. I forage for mushrooms on occassion, but never have I found a onion quite in that manner (or color).