Thursday, April 18, 2024

Morning, errands and entertainment.

1. I murmur an acknowledging greeting to a passing bin man.

He is a well brought-up African and replies with eye contact and a warm 'Good morning. How are you?'

I then have to respond with information about my wellness, and a polite inquiry about his. For me as a well brought-up woman from south east England, this is terribly awkward; but I value the disruption and  I appreciate the warmth.

2. A new tube of toothpaste and a birthday card -- these are not difficult errands. 

3. I discover that Is it Cake? is a real thing, not just invented for a gag on Ghosts. I only know this because my husband and daughter are fans.

3b. The episode of Successville in which Martin Kemp gets so confused that he forgets his own name will never, ever get old.

Wednesday, April 17, 2024

In the pond, spotted leaves and better kind of chocolate spread.

1. No tadpoles that I can see -- but something flips in the water just beyond my field of focus.

2. I take the muddy path so I can check on the orchids -- their spotted leaves are present among fine new grass blades.

3. Nick has bought the better kind of chocolate spread -- the one with loads of hazelnuts in it.

Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Before, filler and in the recycling.

1. Getting back just before the rain.

2. Smearing filler into wall holes.

3. We have had a collection of empty Prime bottles for a while now because when this influencer-powered energy drink first came out, the children were sure they would be valuable one day. But now thinking has changed, and I get permission to put the lot in the recycling.

Monday, April 15, 2024

Coffee, just passing and flowers on the bank.

1. Unexpectedly, a chance for a coffee and a gossip. Our slower times have converged again.

2. I make a short (and rapid so I'm not noticed) diversion through the park and to see Bettany and friends playing on the swings.

3. In my absence, the bank has become covered in spring flowers -- violets, primroses in various shades of yellow and ochre, and anemones, and even some early bluebells.

Friday, April 05, 2024

Squirrel, spring flowers and tracks.

1. Squirrel! Little skinny thing with a bottle brush of a tail crossing the snow to a twisted latch.

2. Where the snow was yesterday, among the bruised winter grass are yellow genapy flowers and white anemones and others that I don't know. 

3. Up high where there's nothing but snow, rabbit tracks.

Thursday, April 04, 2024

Weather, translation and acoustics.

1. Today the ski instructors are wearing greatcoats against the falling snow.

2. At the food market, an English man without much French explains to the cashier that he is leaving tonight and that he is grateful for all her help.

2b. We go home a rather long way, despite the rain, wandering among the chalets. I catch the scents of wood smoke and of goats.

3. There is a spot from where, by some quirk of mountain acoustics, I can hear the piste bashers working far above us and over the valley.

Wednesday, April 03, 2024

Falling, icicles and sleepy song.

1. To look up and see snowflakes falling from a blue sky.

2. Among the dark pine branches icicles shine, thawing and freezing, thawing and freezing.

3. My niece tells me about sleepily listening to my sister sing 'Feed the birds, feed the bag, tuppence a bird.'

Morning, errands and entertainment.

1. I murmur an acknowledging greeting to a passing bin man. He is a well brought-up African and replies with eye contact and a warm 'Goo...