Sunday, February 10, 2008

A spring in the stride

It was the squashed frog that started it.

Still moist, it lay spreadeagled on the road where it had met its sticky end. I thought the frogs were all still hibernating, but it would seem not. Instead, they are awaking from their elongated winter sleep and sallying forth to seek sex, mind and body obeying instinct's instruction to find water and a mate. It probably never heard the car; I hope it didn't feel anything. I have a soft spot for frogs.

But it was the first signal I have seen this year that spring may not be so far around the corner. Every year, it seems impossible that the dark dampness will end, and every year I am amazed anew. But the light is gradually winning its battle and this weekend it crowed its superiority. Today, the sea was turquoise and the beach was packed.
Beyond, the castle was masked by a diaphanous veil. Only the greyish wash sullying the blue showed it was a February not a June sky and the beach people wore coats rather than T-shirts.

Riding the Grey Mare, I spotted snowdrops beneath a naked thorn bush. The Grey Mare too, is naked - afterwards, I turned her out without her rug so she could enjoy a couple of hours of sunshine on her back. Of course, the first thing she did was roll in the mud before sallying forth to see her boys.

Like the frog, she is currently being driven by instinct. It is her first season of the year and it would be fair to say she is quite the definition of a saucy mare, as she shakes her booty at the boys, then sniffs, snorts and arches her neck. Thank god none of them have any balls.

12 comments:

Gill said...

ooh are the frogs at it already? that means there will be tadpoles soon.

Omega Mum said...

I like frogs, too. And from experience, I can tell you that they can scream if they are stressed (I don't torture them but have a cat). So I think you can assume it didn't suffer. Hope that helps.

Winchester whisperer said...

I saw a huge bumble bee yesterday - really cheered me up.

Jane said...

Yesterday must have been a good day for wildlife: I saw a bumble bee too, and a Peacock butterfly, and there is a hedgehog living under the hens' hay pile.

Poor Frog. There have been a few dead badgers round here on the roads which I always hate to see.

Sarah said...

I am sure there are, hidden in pockets in Northumberland, a veritable -ooh, is there a name for a collection of bloggers?
A post of bloggers?
No, too obvious.
A net of bloggers? A web, even...
for ,whatever it is called, there is an abundance.
Yet, scan the horizon, of a morning, at Bamburgh Beach and hardly a soul to be seen.
Tomorrow I'm going to shout, 'Coo-ee!'

Yorkshire Pudding said...

If only women in night clubs would signal their availability like your grey mare. In my early years of seeking mates this would have saved me a helluva a lot of hassle.

Expatmum said...

Homesick, homesick. We are freezing to death here and it's just started snowing AGAIN! Oh to be on an English beach. I swear it would seem so tropical I would have to take a dip!

Pig in the Kitchen said...

it's not right is it, all this warmth and springlike stuff. It was 32 degrees outside our house yesterday and we had lunch in the garden. Bonkers. Haven't seen any frogs yet tho.
Pigx

Mopsa said...

If you want spawn, you know where to come....

ziggi said...

I have to on constant frog patrol this time of year because our pond has steep sides that prevent frogs getting out (I have yet to figure out how the get in - it's long way from the ground!)(not a sunken pond you understand!) and if I'm not quick they drown :(
Last year I hit on floating a plank in there (it was supposed to be a ramp but it kept falling in) and in the morning I would tip the joy riders back in the brook.

The Grocer said...

love it when someone gets descriptive about roadkill, I think it is a Northern trait.

@themill said...

Poor,frustrated mare.....