Exactly forty years ago today I was only just a teenager when I saw my first Goldfinch. I spent every available minute walking, looking for birds, mushrooms and beetles and enjoying the freedom of being outside in the constant Oldham drizzle. If I had ten pence I could catch the bus to Holden Clough or Medlock Vale. If I didn’t have any money then I would walk there along the polluted bus-route, lined with shoddy terraces to the tiny oasis of green.
I was so thrilled to see a Goldfinch that I drew it in my nature notebooks when I got home:
Today I’ve driven to the local country park with my camera and I’m in the woods. I’ve come prepared with a telephoto lens and a handful of bird seed. I’m in luck; exactly forty years later and here’s a Goldfinch.
They are still very wary.