I'm sitting in the summerhouse in the garden and have had to put on one of my padded winter shirts. The evenings and nights are still chilly and my tomatoes and courgettes aren't growing as much as I would like them to. I've started to harvest the new potatoes and I seem to have a glut of lettuces. I bought a pack of mixed lettuces back in the spring and the dark red ones have been a runaway success. They have thrived in the drought in the both the garden and the allotment whereas normal green ones have struggled to get going. We had a good bit of rain last weekend which has been a thankful relief and the weather is now a bit unsettled but it was probably too late to make much of an impact on struggling arable crops which are well down on yields.
I am reading 'Wildwood - A journey through trees' by Roger Deakin and thoroughly enjoying it. Most of my reading has been a bit heavy over the years and this is a good easy read and very interesting. Some people have the very fortunate ability to relate to and write about nature in very deep ways. For me it is always a struggle. I think mainly because I am not in a rural environment and life and work just doesn't revolve around countryside ways in the way it does with others. My garden and allotment are an integral part of my life but often in a very functional way. I can take time out to go and enjoy the countryside - I don't have to attend to it or manage it, that is someone else's responsibility. Thus I can appreciate it from a different perspective.
This evening I have forced myself to sit outside as dusk approaches and do a bit of painting and writing. The air is cool and fresh. A blackbird sings atop a neighbours television arial and the honeysuckle is just beginning to flower. Its fragrance is superb.The longest day will be in only a couple of weeks and summer doesn't feel it has arrived yet. The long warm spell we have just had did have a bite to it. The nights were cold and it seemed a foreigner in a strange place at this time of year.
We had couple of days in Derbyshire last week and visited Ilam, Dovedale, Hardwick Hall and cycled along the Tissington Trail. Two beautiful days were given to us and it was a superb mini holiday.
It feels an odd year this year in some ways. I haven't drummed much. Life seems to be revolving around work, home, redoing the kitchen, the allotment and just keeping up with day to day things. A lack of inspiration and external input has put my philosophical and spiritual exploration on hold it seems. And the weeks whiz by....