[Smashy the Hammer] [An Aspiring Luddite]
I carry no phone
An aspiring Luddite
In a wired world.
[Jeff Berry]
Jeff Berry is an early adopter of the Internet and the Web, a late adopter of Twitter, and declines to adopt Facebook. With the death of Google+, he's experimenting with federated platforms . He admins a medievalist Mastodon instance, and can found on the PlusPora diaspora pod. He hates cell-phones.

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Strange Doings in Norfolk
A strange thing happened a week or so ago. Rather a perfectly normal thing happened, but it felt strange because it had been so long since it happened. As I was rolling my bicycle out of the garage in the morning, I heard birds singing.

It seems such a little thing, the chirp and twitter of birds as one cycles to the train station of a morning, but it's been months since I've had it. I leave relatively early in the morning, and Norfolk is sufficiently far north, that by mid-September I'm boarding my train in the dark, and it is only now that I am in the light for the first cycle leg of my commute. That, and the fact that it is winter, means that for about six months out of the year, the first part of my commute is made in silent darkness. A bit of bird song is not such a small thing after all.

It's not all dark and grim. It's light in Cambridge when I arrive by mid-February, and I won't disembark in darkness again until October sometime. Those liminal months, when the sun rises while I am on the train have their charms. I get to watch the sunrise, for one thing. There is something vaguely surreal about travelling perpendicular to the sunrise.
To my left, the night
On my right, the morning
I straddle the dawn

As the rail leg of my journey begins to take place in light, I begin to look for the landmarks which have been obscured for half the year. There is a fallen tree near the tracks, and one day a few years ago, a black cat sat in the grass regarding a bird perched, I assume, just out of pouncing distance. I looked for that moggie all that year, and saw him (or her, I was too far away to make an accurate judgement, and was on a moving train besides) a few times. The next year, or was it the year after, I no longer saw the black moggie, instead a white cat would sometimes be sat in the grass as I went by.

Near Ely, there is a stretch where the birds nest - swans, herons, and others I can't name. On the way in, I cast my eye to the East and see the herons preparing to go about their daily activities. Their courting is mostly complete, and they are setting up housekeeping, and hunting. By the end of the month, perhaps, there will be eggs in the nest.

There is also, as I approach Ely, one of the finest views to be had from a train - that of Ely Cathedral across a field, where a stand of trees obscures much of the city.

I get less reading done on the train during the summer than the winter, but I can't say that I object too much.

Luddite'sLog, 5 March 2019
© 2019 Jeff Berry

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