Mostly trees, with some avian and velocipedic activity

Probably just to spite us as the beginning of March approached, the weather deities dumped another large quantity of snow on us this past week. It started at 9.15am on Wednesday and finally stopped precipitating at about 12noon on Thursday. Those few volunteers who made it through to Lochwinnoch were sent away at 2pm in case we got snowed into the car park with nothing to snack on but sunflower seeds (if there’d been choccie coated ones I’d have risked it!) It put paid to my planned 40miler outdoors on the bike on Thursday but I did in fact achieve it on the trainer. Not much avian activity – or at least not that you could photograph. Here’s what I mean:

snoffinches?

The birds were all puffed up against the cold snow and blow and looked like mad punk rockers:

I think I spotted a brambling in the garden early on Friday but the camera was all packed ready for Willowbog so was unable to snap it.

And so off to Willowbog on Friday morning for the BSA exhibition. The snow had cleared by the time I got over the Kingston Bridge only to return later that night once I got to Willowbog. Now I am not taking any blame for that, but it did mean of course that there was a danger of people opting not to come owing to the weather. This turned out to be less of a problem than expected and although it was down on last year, attendance remained good. The show itself was of high quality which made it even more amazing that I was awarded a Certificate of Merit for my white pine. My rack display was better this year than in the past but still lacks two top quality trees to compete with the big boys.

Rack Display

White Pine

Side events at the show included a pot making workshop with David Jones of Walsall Cermaics – an activity I’ve undertaken before but which I entered partly for fun but aso becuase I fancied making the replacement pot for the white pine as its current one is chipped. Anything with David Jones is a laugh and this was no exception.

Don't even think about saying I can use it for making sandcastles

But by far the most bizarre occurrence of the weekend was the styling competition which I entered against my better judgment as Peter and Marco weren’t getting as much support as they’d have liked. Now as you all know I am a shy shrinking violet (where doing bonsai is concerned anyway) and it put me well out of my comfort zone to be styling a tree with seriously good bonsai people wandering around me and watching. I didn’t even go in to the judging session because I thought the tree was such a pile of the brown stuff. When they shouted on me to say I’d won, I really thought they were at the wind-up. And when I realised they were serious, I did that wonderfully adult and mature thing – I burst into tears and ran away. Hey! It’s been a tough year so far and my confidence has taken not so much a knock as a serious pounding over the job situation and the ongoing shenanigans with back pay. I’m only wee after all! But – mebbe I amn’t (don’t do that eye-rolling thing, that is way more grammatically accurate that “I aren’t”) that crap at bonsai after all. better not be – two trees from Willowbog are now spat on!

the shy one

Enough for the nonnes, other than to say that the Willowbog snow put paid to my achieving my 1000 bike miles so I could have saved space in the van by leaving the black beauty at home. See you next week and by then the 1K will have been bagged – one way or another.

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