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  • thewonderingway


Updated: Apr 19, 2023

Over the last month my microblogs on Instagram have included some personal memories, the natural world and some history events. Take a look at the latest nine.

That pen and ink drawing is the “poison glen” in Donegal which came to mind as Instagram turned green to mark #StPatricksDay. This place has an almost mythical status in our family lore, as my father recounted his adventures, hitchhiking and camping, in fifties Ireland. My post included an excerpt from my Uncle’s book on his early climbs, which captured their spirit.

In including the obligatory #blossomwatch post, to push the greyness back into winter, I was pleased to be able to highlight some of the nature resources I enjoy. #Noticing Nature and #WildflowerHour on Twitter, the inaturalist app and the recently completed Plant Atlas of Great Britain and Ireland. All of them offering opportunities to share what we discover, whilst out and about.

The 21st March is a day of remembrance for our family when we think of the life lost of my great uncle. He escaped the soot of Bradford and a tough home life to die at just nineteen, in one of many shocking episodes of the first world war. I find the words from the King, sent to the family of every fallen soldier, very moving. His sacrifice will not be forgotten.

We have been fortunate to attend a few history events this month. The first was IWM history festival. To be honest, I was going as a favour, but what a stimulating day it turned out to be. Perhaps it was our choice of talks but my lasting impression was- what an impact the reporting and the narrative of war has, not just upon morale, but even the direction of war.

Later that week I was delighted to join the medieval week in Lincoln and discover the astounding story of Anne Askew; the last woman to be burnt at the stake during the reign of Henry VIII. I am still learning, as I read the Prize for the Fire by Rilla Askew. I share her bewilderment at the withdrawal of the right to read the bible, from women. How astounding, that this should be a proscribed book?

Walking the streets of the beautiful city of Lincoln I noticed how many wonderful trees there were. I am a great fan of the trees for streets movement where communities are given trees to look after on their streets. I am hopeful that we will relearn to see the value of street trees, as a remedy to our concerns about the atmosphere and temperature.

I have long been a fan of Marie Lavoisier, the chemist, and how pleasing to get some answers to two questions I have pondered, over the years from Philip Balls programme Madame Lavoisier’s translation of oxygen. Firstly, the relationship that is revealed in the picture by David and secondly how she became so involved with the EnglishChemists. So, whether you know of her or not I think you will find interest in that #ScienceStory.

I am sure I am not alone in finding delight and wonder in the latest David Attenborough show, #WildIsles. Watching nature films has not been a lifelong interest for me, but in the last decade I have found each series utterly wondrous. The ability of current filmmakers to set up and wait for the shot, and create such engaging narratives, will hopefully lead to a better interaction of man with the natural world.

My final microblog of this set of 9 was to share the story of the willow. Great to hear this special on the centenary of the Willow Collection on my regular listen: Farming Today. From baskets, cricket bats and aspirin. we heard of the growth of willow as a renewable fuel. Less expected was its potential to return as the polymer of choice in the search of a replacement for plastic to provide containers, and perhaps, a new anticancer drug. Another great show from BBCAudio.

I hope this round up of my latest microblogs on Instagram encourage you to explore the original content.

If you discover that it informs, entertains or moves you please consider a like or a follow on

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