Wednesday 28 September 2016

Autumn delight

I mean, look at these.
Multicoloured berries,
like necklace beads,

or sugared almonds,

or tiny speckled blue eggs.

They were growing on some kind of vine
on a wire fence surrounding the tables
at a café in Kew Gardens.

I have never seen anything like them.
Nobody was taking any notice of them.
They weren't flagged up as seasonal highlights 
on the board at the entrance.

Finding them was a moment of pure delight.

If I can find out what they are
I'm going to grow them everywhere.

Monday 26 September 2016

Summer's End

It was a perfect day to tackle a section of the 1066 Country Walk.

 And then this:
the sight of House Martins congregating on telephone wires and roofs.

We stopped half way for lunch in a pub,

turned back to retrace our footsteps,

and every last one of them had gone.

Today I pulled up the spent squash and runner bean plants
and started to think about -

you might want to look away now - 

my Advent window.

Thursday 15 September 2016

Harvesting lavender

What lovelier job is there in the garden.
It was so hot, I sat in the shade and stripped the stems
in a kind of stupor.

The humming bird moth was the liveliest creature
out there that day - too quick for my camera.
Even the bees were languorous.

These exceptional September days of 30º C plus
are forecast to end tonight with storms.

Saturday 10 September 2016

Letters from Abroad

When I was a child we never travelled further than Cornwall
(by steam train!).
We had no car and I took my first flight aged 16 when I went on a school cruise.
Nevertheless I was set a holiday project at primary school
entitled Letters From Abroad.

I had to write and illustrate letters from imaginary friends
in six foreign countries.
This was a great trial to me and my mother that summer.
I remember sitting for hours at the dining room table surrounded by
piles of travel brochures brought home from the travel agents,
snipping out pictures of exotic locations
and laboriously writing stilted descriptions of the
wonders to be seen in (amongst other places) the USA and India.

This morning I am having an entertaining exchange
with JofIndia about this,
and am salivating over a picture of his breakfast of 
masala dosa, tuna fish curry, vegetable sambar and hot lime pickle.

I have also just uploaded a picture of grand-daughter 
sitting on the steps to her New York apartment.
Son One has been for a run in a Brooklyn park and met the Mayor of London.
Son Two (also in New York) has attended a Pilates class 
and been for an Indian vegan curry.
Daughter-in-law has unpacked a gazillion suitcases and got everyone 
settled in nicely.

Through this blog and others I enjoy letters from
families at Home and Abroad every morning.

My mother would have loved the internet.

Friday 2 September 2016