Kingfisher Bonus

Today started just as cold as yesterday, but the wind had eased considerably, so it was a lot more comfortable to be out driving. The sun came out for a short while, but its weak heat didn’t last very long.

Clare driving Bartimaeus
Clare Driving in December Sunshine

Our schedule required us to reach Norbury Junction today, which we managed before lunch.  We decided to fill up on diesel here.  One reason is that they claim to be about the cheapest on the network.  We have also decided to try to keep the water and diesel levels higher than we did in the summer.  We don’t want to run out of either if things change unexpectedly.

Once we’d got diesel I did an awkward diagonal reverse along the noses of a dozen moored boats to get to the water point.  We went to have lunch “while it filled”, but I hadn’t even started eating before we were full – we’d not used much since yesterday.  We finished our lunch anyway and then decided to get some bonus miles done in the pleasant conditions.

In a long cutting I spotted a kingfisher, our first for a while.  We had a few more sightings in the cutting.  Several of the birds sat still as we drove by, in some cases with their backs to us showing their grey wings and blue backs.  We saw one a bird zooming under one of the high and narrow bridges.  I coasted slowly through the bridge with the engine off, and we were rewarded with the sight of the kingfisher only a boats width away from us.

As we gawped at it and tried to take photos with our inadequate cameras, it dived straight down in to the water and emerged a moment later with a fish.  It perched a few yards further on and as we drifted forward we could see it bashing the fish against a branch before swallowing it.

We came to a mooring spot just as the rain was coming on – perfect timing.  The real bonus of the extra distance we managed today was the kingfisher sighting.