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Walthamstow Reservoir Observations

Updated: Jul 13, 2020

Watching a cabbage white butterfly weave its way in and out of the plants as if there were a track invisible to the human eye.

Gentle ripples on the reservoir surface. Noticing the colour change as the shallow bank tilts downwards into the deeper waters altering the water from gradients of light blue green to darker tones, helped by the vegetation underneath which appears in dark clumps, from my view. Another vantage point may give the impression of a different colour palette.

Hot sunshine on my skin, red spots appearing as the ultra violet damage takes hold. But the sun is intoxicating, enhancing my well-being. I decide to stay for longer.

Noticing the detail; what initially appeared to be a buttercup is in fact much more ground hugging. The same familiar yellow petals similar in size to those of a buttercup, but the stamens are more apparent. Small palmate leaves with serrated slightly rounded edges attached to a long tendril nestled on the ground is accompanied with beginnings of new flowers. Nestled among delicate feathery leaves of a species I cannot recall, are Lesser Knapweed Centaurea nigra, Common Mallow Malva sylvestris, Rat’s Tail Plantago major and Daisy Bellis perennis.

My bare arms and legs attract insects both land and air bourne. Ants, flies, a ladybird, and a spider more akin to a water skater but I do not recognise it. A field spider is unintentionally wiped away which results in its death. My conscience is truly sad and I will be thinking about this for hours, noting its death was down to my clumsy action.

My eyes turn towards the water once more. Its surface is so still accompanied by a gentle breeze. A small bird rises upwards and like lightening propels itself onto the water’s surface, after a morsel of something to eat.

It is also time for my tea so with a rejuvenated mind and body I head home.

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