Thursday, September 28, 2006

The weather is getting warmer, and the lovely winter rains have slowed down.
A reminder that we are moving into that part of the year when we all start saying "I cannot believe it will soon be Christmas."
There are a couple of very distinct "seasonal" reminders just in front of "Devon." The other morning, Bernie and I were enjoying a cuppa on the front verandah, when we realised the first pair of Fairy terns have set up their nursery on the branch of the big old White Oak.
Each year, the terns spend our winter up in more northerly climates, such as the Philippines, and return in the mid to late Spring, to breed their young. They return to the same trees and branches generation after generation. They do not build nests, but hatch their eggs directly on the branch, sealing it with a sticky secretion. The same "glue" helps the very fluffy chick to stay in place until he develops his smoother white flying feathers. Sadly, in a storm, some chicks or eggs may be blown to the ground. It is very tempting to try to rescue these chicks, and hand feed them. But our efforts are not always successful....nature knows best.
Meanwhile, the native wisteria has burst into bloom and is draping itself over nearby trees. There will still be some blooms when the Jacaranda starts to put on its November show...they look wonderful side by side.
Here is an update on the Norfolk Incinerator. Captain Pugwash and his men have reached Forster on the New South Wales Coast, after an exceptionally speedy run from Lord Howe. After gathering their resources, and carrying out minor maintenance, they will continue down the coast to Sydney, and John will leave them there and head back to Norfolk Island.
Granddaughter Emily, who arrived last Sunday, will be very glad to see her Uncle John, especially as Uncle Charles, together with Kim, heads off to New Caledonia today on a special charter, for a few days R&R.
Life is very busy just now. We are both actively involved in preparations for an Organ Recital tomorrow evening at the Chapel, a Museum display next week, and the A&H Show the following weekend. I hope to bring you news and pictures of all these events in coming posts.
Meanwhile, here is a picture of Charles and Kim at the airport, prior to their departure.

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