1 February 2021

February… It’s come round yet again. As I say in On the Moor:

February is, without doubt, the crappiest month of the year: Christmas long gone, and still winter drags on! By February, it’s getting beyond a joke. As my friend Mary used to say, there’s a reason why they only gave it twenty-eight days.

But, despite stereotypes, this particular February began as it clearly had no intention of going on. It was an absolute belter. A cold, crisp winter’s day, with the faintest hint of spring in the air. The snowdrops in the garden improved matters even further. They always remind me on Mum. Snowflakes were her favourite flowers. The ones in our garden came from my parents’ garden, which themselves, five decades earlier, when such things were less frowned on, came from the local wood.

The weather was too pleasant to ignore, so Jen and I took a stroll round the lanes. As we headed down the hill above the Lane Ends pub, I spotted a grey heron flapping low and languidly up out of the valley, across the field towards us. I had plenty of time to get my camera ready, and couldn’t believe my luck as it flew by right in front of us.

Grey heron
Grey heron

A fabulous day. But it is February… There’ll be two inches of snow overnight, mark my words.

Richard Carter

Richard Carter is a writer and photo­grapher living in Hebden Bridge, West Yorkshire. He is currently working on a book about looking at the world through Darwin’s eyes.Website · Newsletter · Mastodon · Facebook

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