Welcome to justthoughtsnstuff

Welcome to justthoughtsnstuff.com (jtns), which I've been writing as a personal blog since 2010. Most of its 680 or so posts are about day to day things - highlights from the previous week, books read, places visited - accompanied by photos of what I've seen. There are some posts, though, that deal with the long-term consequences of emotional and economic abuse that went on for several decades and which came to a head in autumn 2010. Writing jtns has become in part a way of coping with these events, exploring them openly and keeping going. These aspects of jtns are discussed in jtns an introduction and life-writing talk, with reference to trust: a family story. Now that the pain of the past years is easing, the frequency of jtns posts is beginning to lessen and in 2020, when the blog turns ten years old posts will stop, if not before. I hope that visitors enjoy reading the posts and looking at the photos and take a little from them. Frank, October 2018
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Saturday, 19 May 2018

oxford canal mural project, sunny days-chilly evenings, where are the bees?























One of the highlights of my Oxford canal walk is the Oxford Canal Mural Project. Perhaps the most striking work is Richard Wilson's kingfisher under the bridge near the Trap Grounds. Though all the murals are a joy to see.

Loving the sunny weather. Great to sit at the top of the garden at sunset - despite the chilly evenings.

What isn't so great is the almost total absence of bees this summer. With shrubs like the weigela in bloom and aquilegia flowering, I would have expected the garden to be buzzing but there's hardly anything.

As the Berks, Bucks & Oxon Wildlife Trust says, 'Heavy use of toxic sprays on flowers, intensive agriculture and a reduction in the number of insect pollinated crops has brought about a huge drop in bee populations. Urbanisation and loss of habitat have hit bees hard. Indeed some wild bee species are close to extinction. Never more so than now, bees need your support.' But, can this sudden absence be explained by sprays or was the hard winter to blame? Will numbers increase? If so when? The garden soundscape without bees is so unnerving.

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