Woke up at 4am and set out to record the dawn chorus. The BBC had promised the rain would hold off till 9am. Walking into the moors I realised the birds had set their alarms earlier than mine. At the bench overlooking the reed beds, I rushed to connect my microphone, set up the Sound Devices and began to listen and record. But the levels on one side of the headphones seemed very low, either that or the birds were all singing from the same branch. There was evidently a problem with the microphone or the recorder, I tried all the connections, but still could only hear the chorus in one channel. It started to rain, the thud of raindrops hitting my dead kitten (the fluffy cover over a microphone which minimises wind noise and rumble). As my jacket and the kitten began to soak up the rain I wandered off toward the top of the moors.
I attached my other shotgun microphone and as I walked and recorded, I came across a swan sat on the riverbank. Passing it by, to face the microphone away from the road noise of the M3, another swan came out of the water and they sat together preening: the tiny sound textures of air moving through feathers, occasionally interrupted by two Canadian Geese who sound like those people who use mobile phones in the quiet carriage.
When I got home I put my dead kitten on the radiator to dry.