Friday, 27 February 2009

Getting on a bit.

When you're over sixty,
Life can deal a rotten hand.
Liver spots and pitted skin.
No chance of getting tanned
For fear of melanoma.
Cancer on the inside
As well as on the out
is a fearful thing to think of,
A disease you cannot doubt.
Aches and pains beset you,
Your hair turns patchy grey,
You feel you've turned invisible
Even on a sunny day.
Backpacking in the Andes,
Canoeing down the Nile
Are not the hols you look for now,
They really aren't your style!
And yet a voice within me
Cries "I'm not really old!"
I want to go whitewater rafting,
Or climb up glaciers cold.
I'd love to learn to parachute
(though I have a fear of heights).
But "I'm afraid you are too old, dear.
Why don't you see the sights
From a coach with every comfort,
And a handy loo on board.
It suits our older ladies
who have problems "down below".
I think you'd find it better, dear,
more suited to your age.
Life is for the young ones
With strong and healthy bones,
And all their life ahead of them,
No ties, no fear, no moans!"
Oh well, I'll get my knitting
And settle in my chair,
And look through all the brochures
And search and find somewhere
I can be myself, and never care
What other people think.
I'll bulge out of my bikini,
And settle with a drink
Down by the turquoise water
Of an island lush and warm.
And a great big hat to shade my eyes,
And a notice by my chair -
"This is an eccentric English lady,
A type not often seen.
Don't go too close, and beware!
She's inclined to take her stick
And poke you in your parts,
Because she's a real character,
(Just thought I'd cheer myself up!)

Sunday, 22 February 2009

The weather has changed a bit and there is a nice wind! I like wind - it makes me feel more alive. I hate the sort of high pressure that sits on my head, weather it's heavy overcast clouds, like a ton weight on my head, and a headache to go with it, or whether its continuous heat and sunshine, which makes me feel lethargic. Not easily pleased, am I??

But a good wind, preferably near the coast, blowing through my hair - well, I could shout, laugh and dance around. I don't though, they might send for the men in white suits!! I did when I was younger, so now I dance in my spirit and shout in my soul.

Spring tulips are lovely, and those in the planter are a lovely red, but I couldn't resist trying a photo of the tulips indoors that I bought last week to cheer things up!

Friday, 20 February 2009

Flea Markets

One of the things we like doing when the weather is better, is to go round flea markets. The one at Leek, in Staffordshire is our favourite, but it is always cold and windy up there so we tend to choose a warmish sort of day! You can buy absolutely everything there, apart from food, all second-hand, or in many cases, third or fourth hand! I bought a lovely galvanised watering can once, which reminded me of my Grandfather's garden, which he tended meticulously when he was able.

Every fourth Saturday a Farmer's market is included. Can't quite see the point, as there is already an indoor market which sells most of what is seen outside on those days. But on the Saturday nearest Christmas it is great fun, fairly lights, Christmas goodies and everyone is a great mood!
I'm looking forward to going again soon, and looking through all the antique jewellery there. Maybe I'll find some treasure!

Tuesday, 17 February 2009

Old and New

I love going to gardens that are open with the National Gardens Scheme (is that the right title?) These are lovely, private gardens that open, usually on Sunday afternoons, in aid of a charity. Naturally, the owners have worked like Trojans to get their garden all ready, and we have been to some really lovely ones, and some that are wilder, and more natural.
I found the old roller in a garden that was made on a hillside, and there were lots of other old implements. It was a gorgeous place. I loved the way that such an ordinary object had been decorated and made beautiful. The sculpture was at a very large, more formal garden, and had one or two other sculptures, all modern. I'm not sure what this particular one was intended to represent - maybe it was there for us to make what we would of it. But somehow I liked it - it seemed to be a picture of what we make of our lives, bits and pieces, fitted in how they will, and yet it made a shape that was pleasing.
I'm looking forward to the Spring, when the gardens will be open again, and seeing what other people do with their own land.

Saturday, 14 February 2009

Looking into the Lake


I looked at the water and watched the scum
trimming the grassy edge
jostling with scraps from old plastic bags,
and take-away boxes of chips.

I looked in the water, and saw my face
distorted by wind-driven wrinkles.
A grey-haired old harridan, ugly and weird,
I laughed, but I looked no better!

I looked into the water as the sun came out,
and a billion miles of space shone forth
between the cloud and I lost myself
in contemplation of a blue eternity.

Friday, 13 February 2009

Strange formations

This came out a rather odd photo! I loved the way the ice had formed around a large stone in our pond. The pale ice was left over from previous cold weather but a sharp frost the night before last made a ring of straight lines. The moss and leaves added colour.
I only explain this because othersie it could have been seen as almost anything!
I thought nature didn't like straight lines, but the ice is definitely sharp edged and even. It reminds me a little of a ruff around the stone. Which then made me think of all the clothes we used to wear - no wonder we thought the summers were warm! Liberty bodices (anyone remember those!!). Strong navy blue knickers, and believe me, in those days, knickers were knickers! And, dare I whisper it - combinations! How my poor mother managed to wash all this lot, I do not know. And when I went out I had leggings - the sort that you pulled up like trousers, with slits up the sides that had lots of little fiddly buttons to do up. And they were thick. And tended to be itchy! Honestly, children these days don't know how well off they are! Comforable clothes, throw them in the washing machine, no ironing! I learnt to iron on my father's separate, button-on shirt collars and cuffs, and woe betide me if I got creases in the corners of the collars.
That's a long way from this photo, though. Looking forward to melting ice and the coming Spring! :)

Tuesday, 10 February 2009

New shoots and icy feet

Well, its a lovely sunny day, we didn't get any more snow, and what there is is melting! but still thick ice on the lake, and all those cold pink feet made me feel sorry for the ducks! But I liked their reflections in the ice. Sometimes I think I hide the real me inside myself, and others only see my reflections, and sort of incomplete blob!

But the bulbs are bravely pushing up through the snow, and hopefully these crocus I planted in the autum will soon be out. That wall with the tiny channel in it is right by the steps down into the garden, so I can see their progress every time I go out. We have a lot of daffodils too, in our garden, and they are shooting up madly. Don't seem to mind the cold weather. I suppose if you are programmed to grow and flower in the Spring, then that's what you are going to do!
Don't feel very programmed today, an itty bitty day, can't get on with anything. Anyone else feel like that??

Saturday, 7 February 2009

Withdrawing to a high place

I rather envy these doves - when life picking up food, or just idling about in the park gets too much, they can fly up to the top of the bandstand, and watch the world go by!

I feel very much like withdrawing at the moment - maybe its the snow and cold - but I can't get motivated to go or do anything! I am supposed to be going to a big celebration at a church I attended once upon a time, and there is lunch to be had there too, but I don't feel like it! whether I will make it or not depends on whether I am able to face going on my own! Not being a very gregarious type of person, its going to be hard to get myself there.

Still, maybe these events in life are intended to make us come out of our shells and interact with others. I expect there will be others feeling like me - who am I to say my feelings are either unique or worth considering??

The doves are nice, too. I've spent ages trying to get decent photos of them flying, but I either manage to get them with their wings in a weird position or they go so fast they result in a blur! I'll stick to them perching, I think!

Wednesday, 4 February 2009


I felt very sorry for the swan on our lake yesterday! He actually has two legs, but obviously he took it in turns to warm each leg up! He and the geese are about the only birds big enough to act as ice breakers, and they can only manage the thinnest ice. The ducks just have to waddle over the ice as best they can, though I have to admit they can get up a fair turn of speed!

The gulls on the other hand look as if they don't care, but as soon as food appears they are a shrieking mass, twisting and turning, diving and snatching at each other in their efforts to get whatever is on offer!
I think of the gulls as the hooligans of the bird world! Mean of me, I know, as birds are just that, birds, and built to keep themselves alive, survival of the fittest/he who gets to the food first!
Its very peaceful, watching the birds, and our ducks and geese are well and frequently fed. They all seem to thrive on white bread! I do wonder sometimes if humans are so very different? (not the white bread bit, the behaviour!)

Monday, 2 February 2009


Like the rest of the country, we have SNOW in abundance! Unfortunately its too slippery for me to get out, but I did manage to take a couple of photos leaning precariously out of the french windows!

I hope I might get out later to take more - there are some interesting shapes around!

Plus, of course, hungry birds on and under the bird feeders.

Hope you all aren't too snow-bound! Time to stay in, keep warm and drink hot chocolate!