Garry Weston Library

What a treat! What a boon! Not only is entry to Southwark Cathedral free of charge, but upstairs there is a fabulously – and naturally – lit library with internet access and easy calm. It is a perfect spot to sit and write. Just down the stairs are the exposed and exhibited medieval foundations and Roman road. And if you take a stroll into the cathedral-proper there is so much more beauty on offer. Tucked away on a bench you will find Doorkins, the resident cat. He sleeps amidst all that accumulated history – warm, content, provided for. Not a bad old life.

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December

A walk in the woods reminded me that this time of year is by far the best for bird watching. The leaves have fallen, so the goldfinches that would normally be momentary flashes in the canopy are now fully visible flocks. Seeing about twenty-five this morning reminded me of how lucky we are. Their numbers are only now really covering. The Victorians used to capture these beautiful birds to coop up within cages. Their numbers were decimated as a result and have taken a century-plus to build up – a rare wildlife good news tale in this world of ours where populations seem everywhere to be tumbling.