Friday, May 26, 2023

Toadflax, blackbird sings and going over.

Cymbalaria muralis growing in the angle between a brown-painted wood gate and a white-painted brick wall.

Cymbalaria muralis growing on a white-painted brick wall.

1. Shout out to my frenemy toadflax (Cymbalaria muralis): a pernicious weed that quickly smothers a container and is hard to eradicate because it grows from tiny pieces of root and drops its seeds very readily... but also pretty with its mauve and yellow flowers, and it has a dramatic habit of growing straight out of an inhospitable vertical surface.

2. On the aerial two doors up, a blackbird sings for anyone who is listening. Two sparrows sitting just below mock it with raucous shouts of 'TWEET!'

3. Rather low, a vintage aircraft goes straight overhead, heading across the clear sky to the coast. It's airshow season.

Thursday, May 25, 2023

Evening cricket, no-mow May and train coming.

1. Through the laurels, the sound of men playing evening cricket.

2. The grass is shimmered with buttercups and stands of grass heads in all their varied glory. I really appreciate no-mow May.

3. Then we run back because a train is going under the bridge we've just crossed.

Monday, May 22, 2023

Paper, snails and nectarines.

1. To my astonishment, they have A5 pads, unpunched and with no margins -- just the way I like them -- in The Range.

2. Snails, bothered by my gardening activities, wave their horns from the high places in the compost heap. 

3. It's the time of year for nectarines and peaches that are perfectly ripe and juicy to an undignified degree.

Friday, May 19, 2023

Passing through, cakes and drowned out.

1. A low sound from the sky: a helicopter flies straight on overhead, taking its troubles elsewhere.

2. At teatime, remembering that we have a tin of chocolate rice crispie cakes.

3. The TV's dialogue is nearly drowned by the birdsong from outside. We have to turn up the sound and draw the curtains.

Thursday, May 18, 2023

Sparrows, black bee and revolution.

1. The sudden movement of sparrows touches our garden.

2. A little black bumble bee working round the alkanet flowers.

3. We have to keep stopping to discuss what's going on, but Bettany seems to enjoy watching Les Misérables (2012), which she's picked out for this evening's entertainment.

Wednesday, May 17, 2023

Early, golden light and foraging.

1. Bettany insists that we will be leaving early for school, as she wants her photo taken on the giant deckchairs advertising the new well water in the Pantiles.

2. To ride on the bus in the half hour before sunset on a day when the light is golden from the rain clouds massing behind us.

3. I pass a girl still in school uniform, walking her dog with one hand and carrying a bunch of grass in the other -- maybe for a rabbit or guinea pig at home.

Tuesday, May 16, 2023

Early, just seeds and float.

1. I was expecting Nick home towards the end of the afternoon, but he comes in time for me to make him a sandwich for lunch. 

2. The Cubs have a minibeast hunt, and a vegetable-related activity. But one lad just wants to plant more seeds. So I sit with him and let him get on, answering questions as required.

3. Willow fluffs floating in the evening sun.

Toadflax, blackbird sings and going over.

1. Shout out to my frenemy toadflax ( Cymbalaria muralis) : a pernicious weed that quickly smothers a container and is hard to eradicate bec...