This week, by bicycle to Abberton Reservoir, a body of water renowned for its flocks of water-fowl. As we watched the swan rose out of the water, wings beating strenuously. We also saw curiously patterned Egyptian ducks.
The second lobe of the reservoir revealed the effects of the drought, with low water levels. Some kind of major engineering works are in progress, and it was hardly a haven of peace. Neither was the Visitor Centre as we mistimed our visit to coincide with that of a junior school trip.
This is Layer de la Haye church. We passed several intriguing large houses on the way, some clearly very extensive manor houses.
Our dining room has gained the mellow ticking of this fine clock, its battered face speaking volumes. It is the clock from the pharmacy run by my husband's grandfather and father. Once it was a fitment in the Edwardian mahogany interior, before becoming unreliable and being replaced by an electric version. Then my husband had made a simple wooden case for it. Later he had another go, making this traditional round case. When the mechanism was renovated by a clockmaker, my husband was mortified to learn that the dimensions he had used were typical of German clock-cases. He brought the case home and reconstructed the little door to English specifications. Strange, but true.
Now, of course, it looks exactly as if made by a professional clock maker in the nineteenth century. The clock man who lives across the road from us, who carried out its latest sevice, commented that at one time he saw a lot of this type of clock as every railway station had one and he had the contract. It is a sign of the times - and of Essex - that he now earns his main living driving stretch limos for proms.
Finally, my version of the Mitred Crosses throw, knitted in 4-ply Shetland and scraps of sock-yarn. I've decided it need not be any larger. I am pondering how to edge it, and leaning towards a flat cable to suggest a band of quilting. We will see.