We all know that, as the year turns, Mother Nature’s palette of colours changes. But while we indecisive mortals might hum and haw about redecoration for weeks or months on end, visiting different shops, compiling mood boards, comparing colour swatches, holding fabrics alongside wallpaper samples, and trying out tester pots of paint, she just gets on and gets the job done.
Continue reading “mostly monotone”
The idea of paintings and pictures as windows and doors into other worlds is fairly common in literature.
From MR James’ The Mezzotint to Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray, pictures reveal secrets that are hidden from the real world; from Princess Rosamund in George MacDonald’s The Lost Princess to Edmund and Lucy Pevensie and their cousin Eustace Scrubb in CS Lewis’ The Dawn Treader, children step – or tumble – through into other worlds and places.
Continue reading “watercolour morning”
It was cold this morning. Cold and misty.
When I went out, it was into a world in sepia.
Continue reading “towards winter”
Last weekend, the UK had the hottest August Bank Holiday on record. Presumably that means it was also the hottest Bank Holiday of all on record, as I can’t imagine it ever getting hotter for the other dates – Christmas, New Year, Easter, or either of the holiday Mondays in May.
But even if it was lovely and sunny, it did seem a little late in the year for perfect rose buds like the one at the start of the post.
Continue reading “trumpets of prophecy”
I guess this is a typical British summer: after another short “heatwave” last week, we’ve just had a weekend of almost continuous rain.
At the start of the week, the world was a multi-coloured blaze of flowers and the buddleia-scented air was busy with butterflies and bees.
But this weekend it’s been cold and grey, and even the feathers, bells and face paints of the local folk festival have done little to brighten the atmosphere.
Continue reading “bee-long days”
I realised this morning that it’s been a long time since I went for a walk. That’s not to say I have been shut up indoors. Nor that I have been entirely sedentary: I may not complete my 10,000 steps each day, but I actually do walk quite a lot.
But taking the short-cut across the park in a rush to catch a train, racing off to the bus station, or scurrying round the supermarket in a lunch break don’t really count as going for a walk. Nor does tottering in high heels from the bus stop up the mile-long drive of a country hotel to attend a business meeting, however rural the setting and however much wildlife one sees en route. (I’ve noticed that many such hotels are on bus routes, though I’m pretty sure the guests don’t use pubic transport; I assume it’s so the staff can get there without them needing to be able to afford to run a car.)
Continue reading “too early”
Of course it’s not May Day at all: it’s just May Day bank holiday in the UK.
May Day itself should have been last week, but passed unnoticed and uncelebrated.
The hawthorn trees and bushes have been in flower for several weeks, so it’s tempting to think that “may is out” and that it’s time to don summer clothing. But given the almost icy temperatures we’ve had overnight again recently, I think we would be unwise to pack away our winter woollies quite yet.
Continue reading “May Day”