I lost a friend. She wasn’t well, so I was vaguely thinking about visiting, and then, suddenly it was all over in that bleak, unfair way that makes no sense, and generates questions.
The winter Jasmine is speckled yellow. A hint of spring, a promise that more splashes of colour are coming soon. But not yet. Storm Christoph turned the lawn to a soggy quagmire and it’s best not to go out. What to do? Make a pizza.
Cold grey, dark grey, more grey. Even blue Monday was grey. Sometimes there is a blinding shaft of low winter sun, instantly lifting everything like a magic spell.
The snowdrops are here. Time to step AWAY from Christmas and the disappointing debris of sherry, stuffing and cold potatoes.
The garden is bleak. Leaves rot on slimy paths, sunflower skeletons collapse against broken garden chairs, abandoned balls wait for dogs that don’t visit and snivelling chickens hang around the back door, hoping for company. Above all this the Pampas Plumes soar towards the sky. ‘Look at us’ they say. ‘See how we glow in the sun. Autumn is wonderful’.
When the world looks troubled, go find a Virginia Creeper, a slow firework to calm the mind. Over summer, while apple trees were fainting in the heat, the creeper was busy, going all out to engulf the greenhouse, vegetables and whatever else it could get its leaves on. Now it is queen of the month.