We all have gloomy memories of that dreadful stretch of wet, grey days throughout June and early July here in Belgium. Today, at least, was a glorious summer’s day. We travelled down to the Famennes (the region just north of the Ardennes) for lunch on a terrace and an afternoon snooze in a shady garden. Later, we sat by a large pond and watched the aerobatic skills of the raucous swallows and martinsĀ as they came down to drink. We would occasionally catch sight of a swift in the mob. Looking up my bird guide to write this entry I was surprised to discover that, whilst swallows and martins are basically part of the same family (I had thought they were in separate orders), the swift most decidedly is not and – here comes the curiosity – is most closely related to the humming bird. After an early supper I took the train back to Brussels. Summer days do not come much more idyllic than that…