It’s the last days of the summer holidays. A time when boredom thresholds plummet, nerves are frayed and emotions run high.
So, an afternoon of fresh air and wildlife watching at the RSPB Conwy Nature Reserve seemed a good plan for myself and Maya (pictured above and below). Besides, they were having a little do to showcase the changes at the reserve over the last year.
The Conwy Connections project has delivered an upgrade to facilities at the reserve in an attempt to attract new visitors – notably families.
There’s a new play area for kids, Y Maes, a central village square for picnics, and the LookOut, a new green-built indoor space for watching wildlife across the water to the saltmarsh.
We followed the boardwalk on a windy but bright late-sumer day, looping through the reedbed to the Tal-y-fin hide with views across to Conwy Castle.
Wild raspberries fringed the path and autumn migrating wildfowl from Scotland and Iceland put on a winged display as the hum of the nearby A55 faded into the background.
We took the Blue tit trail, circling back towards the Visitor Centre via the wildlife garden with its clumps of scented honeysuckle and fragrant lavender. On the way, we hunted frogs by the pond and uncovered minibeasts in the shrubs.
We’re back at school in a few days but, for now, we just breathed the fresh air and soaked up the last rays of summer-holidays sun.
Back at the event, meanwhile, the flesh-pressing and speech-making was in full effect.
And Maya? She eschewed the lengthy presentation for the monkey bars, whizzed through the tour and made it to the marquee early to snaffle the best of the cake.
That’s my girl.