The life and times of Jenny Holden: Wildlife Consultant, freelance writer, wilderness addict and novice shepherd.
Thursday, 7 October 2010
Bare feet and mobile bones
Life can't be bad when you can walk three miles barefoot along a beautiful sandy beach...
in CUMBRIA in SEPTEMBER!!
But that's exactly what Chris and I did with my parents a week or so ago when we took a long stroll around North Walney Nature Reserve and beaches.
It was a simply beautiful day as we strolled through the yellow sand dunes, across the salt marsh with it's fascinating flora, and out to the end of the island where turnstone foraged along the shingle and where we found the perfect place for a sit down and a brew.
Chris is getting used to the fact that my family are impulsive foragers. I was brought up to know many sources of free food and uses and appreciation for things that you find lying around.
September is prime time for finding one of my very favourite mushrooms, the Parasol. These are big and we only needed to take a couple for Chris to make into a fabulous soup when we got home.
Mam and I found a very useful length of rope littering the beach which we tidied off the sand to use in the garden and I found this amazing bone...
I think that it must be a dolphin or whale bone, but am happy to be corrected. It looks like the bone at the base of a flipper; so perhaps it is a large seal.
The concerning thing about it is that it has clearly been neatly cut through by some implement. I wonder what the poor animal's fate was.
When I insisted that it was coming home with me Chris nicknamed it my "mobile bone".
With these and various other useful things and bits of fishing gear that ought not to be left on the beach, where they are a hazard to birds and other wildlife, we had rather a lot to carry. Luckily, the beach provided the answer in the form of an old fish box washed up on the shore.
It's good to see that Fox appreciates the gravity of such a find!
My bonkers family and I carried that box for over three miles across the sands of Walney Island.
But it was a wonderful stretch out and the dogs were delighted.
Not to mention absolutely knackered and just a tad sandy!