songofcopper: (gaze)
What do we do almost without ceasing? Even while asleep, or in meditation? We PERCEIVE. Information washes up upon the shores of our flesh, and we have feelings about it. It is impossible to say whether this is important or useful or significant in the grand scheme of the Kosmos, but it’s a phenomenon that is unavoidably ongoing.

Even if your conscious mind goes bye-bye, your brain is still doing it regardless.

Often, we value our various perceptive experiences very subjectively. (And why not; what else is a perceiver to do? Perception can never be truly unbiased.) We consider that sitting around in our underwear staring at an empty crisp packet is somehow less instructive or enlightening than climbing to the top of a green hill and remarking the horizon. Personally, I don’t want to exclude the possibility that the sight of a humble crisp packet might nudge my perceptive faculties towards some kind of life-enhancing comprehension of… something. But on the other hand, I happen to live in one of the most beautiful regions of our silly little fool of a planet, so I may as well put on outdoor clothes and wander around in it.

(Yes, our planet is a silly little darling. Other, more sensible planets are seemingly little disposed to bother with the confounding and sticky business of hosting life. ‘What on Earth for?!’ is the only reasonable reaction to the presence of life, really. Perceivers seem to like having reasons for things, but there needn’t be a reason. We cherish the question ‘Why?’ when we might be happier fellows if we prioritised ‘How?’ instead. Anyway - for no discernible reason, You and I Exist. Shall we shrug and humbly enjoy it together?)

Ecce: my weekend has included the imposition of Me upon several landscapes. On Saturday we took the train to Exmouth and then got the bus to Budleigh Salterton, before strolling back to Exmouth along the coastal path. I definitely, thoroughly recommend this. Here are some photographs which shall speak in tongues for eyes to hear. ;-)

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The beach at Budleigh Salterton wore shades of silver and steel in the morning. It was so still that there no waves. The sea was mute, flat as a puddle of mercury. We passed various kiosks, just starting to open up. It felt as though the place was waiting for enough human beings to turn up before switching itself back on.

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We looked at the town (old fashioned, picturesque, genteel) and ate some lunch and had ice cream before beginning our walk back to Exmouth. By now the world had woken up properly. The forecast had promised ‘thick cloud’ all day, and it lied.

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A cliff-top Emy, unsuitably attired. Sweater highly unnecessary, despite highly appropriate slogan: ‘Universal Anything’. ;-)

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We saw tons of these tent-making caterpillars, proliferating on brambles. They are hairy and look highly indigestible - predators, beware! I looked them up later and read that they will grow up to become Small Eggar moths.

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Here you can see the enormous Devon Cliffs holiday park in the distance (at the highly-originally-named Sandy Bay). The path wends through the park, which is a Prisoner-esque maze of spick-and-span static caravans, all numbered and arranged in quaintly-named streets. We stopped for a drink at the on-site pub. Resuming the path was not easy; that was the really Prisoner-esque part. For a while I thought we’d be trapped in the park forever, obliged to make a downpayment on a brand new luxury holiday home, sea views, sleeps three in spacious comfort, white goods included. The sense of impending existential parable was enhanced by the presence of a military firing range right next to the holiday park. I was particularly impressed at how the propane storage area (scantily shielded by a teasingly-sheer chain-link fence) was situated right next to the boundary. Slightly-scorched holiday-maker to eager local journalist: “That’s not the kind of adventure holiday I had in mind.”

But we spotted the way out eventually. Opportunity to bellow, “I am not a number, I’m a free person-of-gently-ambivalent-everything.” >.<

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Bluebells chime in the shady wooded places.

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Galls! :-) I think these are Aceria campestricola on English Elm.

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I couldn’t resist photographing this sign. ‘Permissive Path to Gore Lane’ is just too titleworthy. Tell me, what do You think is the plot of this story or movie? (I’m thinking rustic folk-horror. Lots of tousled hair, ripe and fruitful nudity, His Lordship’s misuse of droit de seigneur, anachronistic purple candles and black velveteen, and goatishly offensive behaviour by village hypocrites. A maverick priest saves the day - belatedly. Original soundtrack available now on 180g marbled vinyl.)

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Now here is a sidelight on human behaviour. Suddenly, right next to the path, here was a field absolutely riddled with wild orchids. There was even a sign telling the observant walker to watch out for wild orchids, specifically the Green-Winged Orchid. And yet, other than us, only one other couple on this popular path actually stopped to look at the LAVISH CARPET OF EXQUISITE WILD ORCHIDS, RIGHT THERE, YOU CAN’T MISS IT, HELLO… Oh, well, perhaps you can miss it. You missed it! I swear, most people passing by did not even notice them. Anyway, I got to enjoy wild orchids for the first time in my life. <3

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You were allowed into the field with its orchids. This is me lying asprawl alongside wild orchids. In many ways this is the mauvest picture of Yrs Trly in existence, which is saying something. >.< Incidentally, I am attired in that black-t-shirt-wearer style because it was Record Store Day. David had hoped to get something from the record place in Exmouth, but the thing he wanted had sold out already. :-( I was wearing that Magma shirt for good luck, but it didn’t work musically on that occasion - but you know what, I’d rather meet a wild orchid than buy a record any day (even a record I really really wanted).

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Back in Exmouth now - because it’s on the ‘Jurassic Coast’ they have a dinosaur trail consisting of various statues of popular extinct creatures. This is a Pteranodon* (*not actual size). I like the way it’s perching rather nonchalantly on the roof of a sea-front shelter.

There is more to tell of my weekend, but I’ll make another entry about that. For now, au revoir, and please keep yer eyes peeled for BLATANTLY EXORBITANT QUANTITIES OF WILD ORCHIDS!!!! :-P
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