Rosy-Faced Lovebirds

Here are two more images – handheld, with the Nikon 70-300mm, of the Rosy-Faced Lovebirds in the trees outside our yard.

The previous image, in my last post, was taken with the Nikon 200-500m lens I have just purchased, using a monopod, and I have to say I am struck, on closer examination, by the superior quality of the bigger lens – its brightness and contrast, as well as its sharpness, which would have been better of course if I hadn’t been so lazy and had set it up on a tripod.

Still, this is just practice and experimentation, until the time comes – i.e., when we go to Madikwe – to get serious.

For the birds

This business of being on my own, here in Johannesburg, is for the birds I think. Fortunately Rob will be winging (eish, that is crushingly bad!) her way back to South Africa from Detroit, via Toronto and London later this week, and I will be picking her up at the airport on Thursday morning. Not a moment too soon, I say.

But staying behind, after I returned two weeks ago, has meant she was able to attend her nephew Kevin’s funeral in Dearborn yesterday, and reconnect with her family, something hugely important to her, especially at a time like this.

But I will be glad to see her.

Ten days after she gets back,  we will be off to Madikwe Game Reserve, with Kath and Gareth and Thomas and a bunch (flock?) of their friends Рwildlife, campfires, the smell of the bush veld. I spent a little time this afternoon, trying out the Nikon 200-500mm lens I have invested in, for this and future birding and wildlife occasions Рthe subject, suitably enough, was a flock of rosy-faced lovebirds, who live in the eaves of the block of townhouses one up from us.

Here is a sample image.

Lovebird # 1.jpg

 

Three countries, three grandsons

Well, I am back in SA, after an all-too-brief visit to the UK and Canada. Rob isn’t. Instead she is in the US, visiting family, and still in the process of sorting out our house in Toronto, damaged in last month’s ice-storm, and dealing with the very sad loss of her nephew, Kevin.

It has been a strange kind of trip, in a way – lovely to see old friends (Mike, down in Kent, and the potluck gang on our visit to Toronto), my son and my daughter and their wonderful partners in London UK and Woodbridge, Ontario; wonderful just to wander down Queen Street in Toronto and feel at home again, and lucky to be Canadian) but tempered with tasks, errands, interruptions, and family disasters.

The time with family and friends was the best, and seeing the grandchildren (three countries, three grandsons, if I count this Saturday in Johannesburg, wallowing in cake and cookies at Tom Tjasink’s first birthday party) made it all worthwhile.

You get to this point in your life, and this is what matters, really – friends and family, and children especially.

Some photos from the trip and from Tom’s birthday party – including Kathy’s fabulous birthday cake.

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