18th March 2020 by emmadurnford

18th March 2020

Our last full day in Yorkshire with Hester and Brian. In the morning we headed over to Settle as Hester needed a few things and Colin bought the very last pack of yeast for his friend who had a bread maker back home - not sure how we will deliver it to him though. We were forced to visit Booths yet again and I stocked up on a few more things and bought some cheese and biscuits for Hester and Brian.

Back home for lunch and then Hester faithfully promised us sightings of Red Squirrels at a place called Snaizeholme. We drove for a bit and parked in a lay-by before walking up a steep hill past nesting Curlews. We reached a little wood near a house and I spotted a red squirrel high in tree so the pressure was off Hester a little as technically we had seen one but we wanted more! We walked through marshland, past some ponds filled with geese until we reached the official squirrel watching area. The squirrels are fed only in this place and only a small amount of food so that they do not become dependent on their daily snacks and will continue to forage for themselves elsewhere in the forest. As we sat in a line on a log, very still and tried not to rustle, it gradually got colder and colder. Every crack of a twig had us looking around but in the event it was only some young pheasants who wanders up to see us. We waited quietly for over half an hour until we finally gave up as the light was getting duller on the grey day. We started to make out way back the way we had come. At least we had seen one when we arrived.

Stop. Hester had spotted movement ahead and suddenly two young red squirrels appeared in a tree in the distance playing and chasing each other. I already had my long lens on but they came closer and closer until they were playing right at our feet and far too close for photos! It really was a fantastic view and we were able to watch them for nearly an hour before we were all so cold we called it a day.

A great end to our time Yorkshire and Hester’s role as tour guide is assured with success in everything she had thought of for us to do and see!

Last thing today - sadly I received a not too surprising email from Asia Tours the company where I was due to be interviewed at in Bristol this coming Friday. They have decided that the risk is potentially too high for people including myself to travel for interview both to ourselves and to the staff.

They had offered video link interviews which I had not particularly fancied so at least I do not have to do this. They have assured myself and I presume the other shortlisted applicants that at the end of all this upheaval and dreadfulness of tackling Covid-19 in a number of months, we will return and the process will continue. Realistically I am not sure this will happen and if it does, it will probably not be until the end of the year at the earliest. I am very disappointed but totally understand and in the scale of what the county and indeed world is facing this is a small thing.

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