Spring is Here

At last, Spring has arrived. When I take Pepe out for his morning walk before going to work, I have the added pleasure of watching the sunrise while we are out.  On our way back home, the sun is properly above the horizon, and I can then feel the warmth of the sun on my face, such an uplifting sense of joy.  That is,  if the skies are clear. No need for a torch, or gloves or a scarf. I still wear my beanie or woolly hat in the morning, more to disguise my dishevelled appearance from just waking up, as opposed to getting cold. There is still the odd bit of frost about, so it will be awhile before I can go out in just t-shirt and shorts. My African blood  struggles with the colder weather, and my bones sometimes ache for the African sun.

The only sounds in the early morning are the birds. The dawn chorus is beautiful. The song thrush sits high in a tree to catch the warming rays while it sings, black birds scuttle in the undergrowth. The robins sit on top of the hedge alongside the path, and are in no hurry to move along, they flit about and don’t stop singing, unless going to ground to catch a nice juicy worm. I walk past the back of a school, and now often see a buzzard sitting on the football goal post – they will find open patches of lawn to find worms and other insects, when food is in scarce supply this time of the year. I have seen a pair of them, and hope that they breed here this year.  Pepe forages amongst the damp grass, and his beard soaks up water like sphagnum moss. The sky changes from a rich colour of grey/blue slate, to a pinky hue as the sun creeps up, while the moon hangs suspended like a silver party ball on the opposite horizon.

In the distance the sun catches the old church clock, the brass and gold bits enhanced by the morning sun. I can see by the time that sadly we need to move along, its time to get back home. On the way back we bump into a pheasant, I see him quite far ahead in the path, and wonder where he is of to. I have heard the pheasant on and off, but have not been fortunate to actually see one here. My photo is sadly a bit grainy, but glad that I have seen him in person.

We leave the fields, and head for home, the kitchen will be warm and inviting. While I sit down to take off my walking shoes, Pepe will come and stand next to me, and lean against my legs, as he wants his collar and harness off. I unclip his harness and collar, and he scuttles upstairs, he doesn’t wait for me, he is taking himself back to bed. I get the kettle on and catch the aroma of the coffee as I fill my mug with boiling water. I rinse the spoon at the basin, and look down the path to the bird feeder, the little blue tits are eating the peanuts, and the tulips are suddenly all open – reds and yellows. I just sigh, life is  good, I am content.




The Weekend is Here

Grab your camera, grab your phone

Walking app on – don’t head back home

Head for the hills, meadows and streams

Climb over the stiles, and dream your dreams

Feel the air fresh on your face

Take a deep breath………forget the rat race

Nature is calling, get out there

The weekend is upon you, don’t despair!

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Changing Seasons

I have lived in England for 17 years already, nearly another life time. I spent the years before immigrating here in the northern part of South Africa – on the border of Kruger National Park – it was always really hot. Just a bit hot, or very hot. Sometimes it rained. Only sometimes mind. There wasn’t much in between.

I can now take great pleasure in experiencing the changes in the different seasons as the seasonal change here in the UK is quite dramatic. It also reminds me that I am getting older, but there is no pleasure in that. We are now on the last dregs of winter. Over the weekend, I could leave the bedroom windows wide open, to let the whole room freshen up. What an amazing feeling, like getting into bed on a cold night, between fresh clean sheets  which have actually dried from hanging outside for the first time in months. It makes the sheets smell like spring.  I see that there are a few crocus that have come up, one is flowering, the daffodils and tulips are growing, snowdrops are about – and today I noticed the dwarf iris are about to open. But I know this is a cruel tease of what is still to come, and am lured into a false sense of security. Earlier years I would have been out in a flash, and had seeds planted for spring, only to be heart broken when we had yet more severe frost and snow, and everything would have died.  But I have become wiser, and now I put the garden to bed in October/November, and leave everything  to sleep peacefully until April.

While I wait for the garden to slowly wake, and stretch its roots, I prefer to take advantage of the longer daylight hours, and if its a sunny day, grab the camera, and head out with our Pepe dog. Some days we call him Mr P, or if he has been naughty, he is just the Ratbag. He likes the warmer weather as well, and spends hours sleeping on the window ledge, and gently snores from time to time.

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Venus, Jupiter, the Moon and Me

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Venus, Jupiter, the Moon and me

Met just before dawn, next to the cedar tree,

I looked up at the crescent Moon so bright

And there they were, all three, what a sight!

The sky was crystal, so crystal clear,

Millions of stars shining, no clouds near.

No one about, no one to see,

Just Venus, Jupiter, the Moon and me.

Venus was saying ”What is the matter

With planet earth, why just look at her,

Her colour is fading from blue to brown?”

Jupiter said this has made him frown,

He has heard of the pollution, plastic waste,

Human wars of killing and nature displaced.

No one about, no one to see

Just Venus. Jupiter, the Moon and me

”I have been around” said the Moon – grey toned

”For aeons and aeons from when dinosaurs roamed,

And never before have I witnessed

How creatures down there have died from sickness,

From to much of everything and to much of nothing

From to much hating and to little trusting”

No one about, no one to see….

Just Venus, Jupiter, the Moon and me.

I whispered with clouded breath to Venus

”What do you think will become of us?”

Jupiter let out a ragged sigh,

While Venus thought it would be better to lie

But Moon said – ”No, just tell true

Everything will die… and so will you”

No one about, no one to see

Just Venus, Jupiter, the Moon and me

”When?” I asked, ”when will this happen?

Before green fields die and forests blacken?”

Venus was silent, Jupiter shed tears of sadness,

They know – these three – there will be no end to the madness,

Humanity wont learn in time they say,

To save themselves, to save the day

No one about, no one to see

Just Venus, Jupiter, the Moon and me


Little Things for Little People

I have enjoyed making things that my children have – hopefully – found useful as young parents. Baby bags, bath towels, nappy tidy’s , and recently a play mat for my grandson. I’m bust making a play mat for my youngest grand daughter, and find that these are really fun things to make. You can incorporate textures ,colours and characters – so important during their different learning phaseslittle things (2)Little things (3)Little things (4)little things (5)little things (6)little things (8)little things (9)Little things