This Could Become a Habit….

Dear Readers, as you know for the past week I have been spending fifteen minutes, three times per day, sitting in the garden counting bees for my OU project. And I rather think I’m going to carry on sitting outside for fifteen minutes at least once per day, even after I’ve collected all my data, because it does me so much good. Even when it’s cold and windy and starting to rain there’s always something to see, be it the magpies arguing in the whitebeam or the blue tits telling off a cat, or just a goldfinch singing silhouetted against the sky.


And another one

It’s been interesting watching the flowering currant gradually going over as well (and the windy weather hasn’t helped) – from the peak of perfection last week, many of the flowers are now on their last legs, and the bees are moving on to the white lilac that’s coming into bloom. It’s not often that we have the time to actually watch the ebb and flow of the natural world, but this week has felt like a gift, a chance to watch things changing from one hour to the next.

And then there’s the pleasure of the bees themselves. Hairy-footed flower bees are really fast, buzzy little things, and they sometimes fly about with their tongues out, as if to make sure that they don’t waste any time at all.

Male hairy-footed flower bee

Female hairy-footed flower bee

And so, however busy you are, I would highly recommend finding at least fifteen minutes (and preferably more) to sit in the garden or outside in the park, and just watch the world go by. There is no greater balm for the agitated mind or the distracted soul, and even if the wind is strong enough to blow your hat off, or the rain is dampening your enthusiasm, you’ll still feel much more connected and alive (and glad of a cup of coffee) when you get back inside.

The flowering currant.

5 thoughts on “This Could Become a Habit….

  1. Anne

    Lovely photographs and I echo your suggestion of the benefits of sitting outside – even for only fifteen minutes. Now that I have retired I stretch that to 45 or an hour (if I can!) in the mornings. I put out food for the birds and have breakfast or mid-morning tea – that time is like a balm to my soul.

  2. sllgatsby

    My son took a weekly wilderness class for a couple of years, learning from a mountain rescue group how to survive if lost, make a shelter, build a fire in the damp, etc. But even now, years later, he still says his favorite part was when they would all go to separate spots in the woods and sit for 10 minutes just listening for what they could hear. I am a firm believer in those kinds of nature breaks where, as you say, you watch (or listen to!) the world go by.

  3. chrisswan94

    I do this whenever I can. I know lockdown was very hard for some people but we are lucky to live in an area where a few minutes walk in any direction will put you somewhere with a green space. I started surveying butterflies during the pandemic but seem to have less time now and the weather has been rubbish. Roll on summer!


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