Social media has got a lot to answer for. I could bore you senseless about what I feel on the subject (and it's not all negative!) One aspect where I think it is detrimental is that, from a comparative birding point of view, you know exactly what has turned up elsewhere. Immediately. It can make you feel ornithologically impotent - a kind of observational erection dysfunction. You've most probably seen the photo of the latest find. You know who found it. And every Tom, Dick and Harry who then saw it afterwards. And who is on their way. And who is thinking about going... on, and on, and on. And yes, I know I don't need to look thank you very much.
It can have a debilitating affect. Take the past few days here on the shingle. A group of us (not a crew, not a posse) have been out all day, every day, birding hard. It has been enjoyable, no arguments. But when put into the national perspective of what is being seen at the other notable hotspots, we are failing on the scarce migrant front, let alone with true rarities. Let's face it, one reason that we are all here NOW, is that this is the plum time to find and see those special birds. So when bleepers bleep and Twitter 'twitters' about the swathe of latest goodies that are turning up anywhere but here, we are reminded of our failures. No Siberian Accentor here. Nor a Bluetail. Our comparing of results is a painful process, especially when we have no sea watching, no falls and no viz-mig going on to mask our disappointments.
But we are at Dungeness because we choose to be here. We don't want to be elsewhere. We are not heading to Spurn tomorrow. We are not contemplating Shetland for next autumn. Tomorrow we get up, open the door, and start all over again with genuine hope.