The Countryside About Us May 1999

posted 30 Apr 2019, 10:06 by Earl Soham Parish Council
At last the “Merry month of May” has come around again. For many it is the favourite month of the year. There is already much to see in the countryside about us. The fresh mantle of a well established spring cloaks our surroundings. Is it your habit to lie in bed until the absolute needs of your day demand you emerge? If so, may I recommend that just once you rise with the sun. Stand facing East and experience the freshness of a May morning. Accompanied by the overture of bird song as the “sun curtain” rises, your feelings of well being will be measurably increased!

Usually at the end of this month, all roads lead to Bucklesham for the wonderful annual Suffolk Show. However, the calendar dictates that this year it falls on June 2nd and 3rd. For countrymen and townsfolk who wish they were, it is an occasion much anticipated. Even when the weather creates an unexpected flurry in the sale of umbrellas and plastic macs, it detracts little from the spectacle. From many far flung country parishes and not least our own, come exhibitors of all varieties. We from this parish are well represented by our farmers, equine exhibitors, dog breeders, the WI and many others. What reflected pride we feel when we see a massive Charollais sporting a winning rosette, led by a familiar figure, or an exquisite flower arrangement labelled with a name we all know. Mix all this with some fine main ring displays, and the pleasure of unexpectedly meeting old friends and it will all add up to a perfect day.

Fishing and country walks have one thing in common. Sometimes, when fishing, nothing happens. You can be lulled into a soporific state of mind. A walk along a familiar route can be equally hypnotic. But like the float on the end of a fishing line that reacts to a nibble, so does the nose of your dog react instantly to different stimuli. Such was the case recently. I was plodding along a footpath by Earl Soham mere. My dog was ahead of me by a few yards, equally plodding along. Her attention was drawn to a rough piece of grass bordering the route. Normally a quick “sniff” is enough to dismiss the source as “ordinary” and continue the “plod”. Not this time. The reaction to the initial “sniff” was if she had been stung. She continued to”sniff” like a yoyo but quickly withdrew her nose each time. I cautiously peered into a clump of grass. To my surprise, as well, a large reptile rapidly uncoiled itself and slid away down the bank side. It was a grass snake fully 3’ long and that is not a fisherman’s story.

Roger Sykes





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