One of the questions in yesterday’s Guardian quiz prompted a family discussion about the Kasanka National Park in Zambia and its enormous colony of bats. Admins 1 and 2 paid a visit there in 2010, which involved getting up in the middle of the night, trekking through a swampy jungle with some armed guards and climbing rickety wooden towers to view the bats flying around. It was spectacular. Here’s another shot we took:
Anyway, in a weird coincidence the Park turned up in today’s Guardian. Apparently some company wants to open a huge commercial farm which would have a catastrophic effect on the wildlife. The paper also has a nice photo essay on the Park’s bats.
Admin1 is reading The Special Dead by Lin Anderson. Admin2 is rereading The Second Sleep by Robert Harris.
Happy Hanukkah and Lucia Day. Christmas Lights Man displaying as usual, with a giant snowman standing in the hall before he hastily shut the door. And Admin2 saw three Geminid meteors in the night [update: later we each saw dazzlingly brilliant ones].
Admin2 is reading Accidental Agent by Alan Judd; most boring spy novel ever.
We scored 8 on the GWQ; no, let’s make it nine because our answer to “What links Johann Strauss II; John Philip Sousa; Benny Goodman; Elvis Presley?” Blue (Danube, Ridge, Moon, Hawaii) was just as good as theirs (King of).
Happy Birthday Guida!
Admin1 is reading The Knife by Jo Nesbo.
You can see this stuff from miles away.
Admin1 is reading Drake by Peter McLean (violent urban fantasy … PM seems to relish rather too much writing about his hero getting beaten up and whipped by women). Admin2 is reading For the Missing by Lina Bengtsdotter.
and Christmas Lights Man is on the case. We scored 7 on a Guardian Weekend Quiz of a few weekends ago. Several more to catch up on.
Admin1 is all aglow because his cricket team stole the show. He’s also been playing The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim since his birthday — thanks, Admin2!
Admin2 is reading Big Sky by Kate Atkinson.
We scored 10 on the GWQ.
Taken from the drone, just after midnight; ISO400, 1 second exposure.
And here they are from the ground:
Sadly it was too windy to let the drone out at midnight, but Admin2’s new camera has a firework setting so here are some fireworks.
Happy New Year everybody xxx
Pallet Man up to his tricks again. Admin1 is reading The Killing Bay by Chris Ould; a low-key crime story set in the Faeroes; it would have helped to have read the prequel. Admin2 is reading The Legacy by Yrsa Sigurdasdottir which was disturbing but compelling. We scored 7.25 on the Guardian Weekend quiz.
Café si el dia: Bolivia Vincent Paye.
A halo with a sundog on the left.
Admin1 is reading Wasted Years by John Harvey. Admin2 is reading On Chesil Beach by Ian McEwan. We are watching series 2 of The Missing.
Admin1 is reading Satellite People by Hans Olav Lahlum.
Happy New Year everybody!
It was the best of times and in some ways, including the solar panels, it was the worst of times, but only because they were switched off on some of the sunniest days.
Admin1 watched Live Die Repeat. We scored 8 on the Guardian Weekend quiz, bringing our yearly average to 8.19, which is a slight improvement on last year.
This load of old optical fibres is apparently part of the Leeds Christmas Lights Trail.
Admin1 is redearing REAMDE by Neal Stephenson (another one >1000 pages). Admin2 is reading The Invisible Man by HG Wells.
We scored TEN on the Guardian Weekend quiz.
Christmas lights man goes even more over the top. 22,000 bulbs, he says.
Admin1 is reading The Second Deadly Sin by Asa Larsson. Admin2 is reading Blood Stream by Luca Veste which was pants. Detective with foreign female sidekick (Rankin, Harvey), old-fashioned musical tastes (ditto) chasing serial killer (everybody), ends up in serial killer’s trap (ditto) but escapes (phew!). And in this case the serial killer has an extremely implausible motive and an incredibly ghastly technique.
We scored 7 on the Guardian Weekend quiz.
Pallet Man’s hundreds of pallets go up in flames.
Happy birthday Guida.
Admin1 is reading Rather Be the Devil by Ian Rankin. We are watching The Fall series 3. And we scored 9 on the Guardian Weekend quiz.
No pic tonight but two loud explosions shook our windows, rattled our walls and brought people out into the street. Apparently sonic booms from RAF Typhoons escorting a civilian plane to Newcastle.
Admin2 is reading The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet by Becky Chambers (a long read and seemingly only the first of a long long series), Admin1 is reading When the Devil Drives by Chris Brookmyre, and we are watching Line of Duty, series 3.
We scored 9 on the Guardian Weekend quiz.
Pendular contrails outside Jimmy’s.
Admin1 is reading A Dark and Twisted Tide by Sharon Bolton (a silly plot involving silly women). Admin2 is reading Frozen Moment by Camila Ceder.
we scored 7 on the Guardian Weekend quiz.
Ooooh! Aaaah! Happy Birthday Guida.
Admin1 is reading Even Dogs in the Wild by Ian Rankin. Admin2 is reading The Three by Sarah Lotz.
This mystery visitor from the skies appeared on our weathercam this afternoon. We searched the garden for craters but found nothing out of the ordinary.
We watched The Manchurian Candidate remake. Admin1 is reading The Dark Forest by Cixin Liu. Admin2 is reading The Murder of Harriet Krohn by Karin Fossum.
We have been watching out for these beautiful clouds every night and tonight at midnight they finally arrived!
Admin1 is reading Slow Bullets by Alastair Reynolds.
It’s Pi Day.
Admin1 was inspired by this page in Atmospheric Optics to photograph our fairy lights while waving the camera around. This is a composite of 3 of them.
Admin1 is reading Reaper Man by Terry Pratchett RIP.
We scored 9.5 on the Guardian Weekend Quiz.
Splish splosh car wash.
Admin1 is reading Gallows View by Peter Robinson. Admin2 is reading The Blood Spilt by Asa Larsson.
Our solar panel summary for 2014 is now available. TL;DR: Best year so far.
Fireworks from our window.
Admin1 is reading Absorption by John Meaney.
Three splendid sundogs today, including the one in the middle which even looks a bit like a dog.
Admin1 is reading Lost in Juarez by Douglas Lindsay and Admin2 is reading Infidel by Kameron Hurley.