Posts Tagged ‘Tony Ellis’

Steadily–in twos at the moment.

Meredith came in from the garden yesterday and offered me two fat strawberries.

I “harvested” two raspberries this morning.

We have already eaten two courgettes.

Tomatoes are small green golf balls–but it’s only the first week of June.

The rain this week and now the sun has made us hopeful.

“Mary Mary quite contrary–” 

My Aunt Mary was contrary–contrary enough to live to 92–and a talented gardener.

She transformed a long rectangle behind her Suffolk cottage into something magical, with a fishpond at the end. She loved her garden and reigned over her 90th birthday party in it–on a glorious early July day.

She and my father were privately adopted in 1915 by my grandmother, who was 40 and a widow.

Granny taught violin and brought the two children up as a single mother. She lived to 87 and was contrary too–according to my mother!

Young Dad--RAF trainee

My father was an enthusiastic gardener–Dahlias in October, as I recall….He grew vegetables too–important in post war Britain where some food was rationed until 1954!

I have not inhereted the gene.

…with silver bells and cockle shells

And pretty maids all in a row.

This nursery rhyme has nothing to do with gardens, I discover, but disguises a darker theme (http://www.rhymes.org.uk/mary_mary_quite_contrary.htm).

A corner of our garden--no sign of silver bells and cockle shells...just a couple of canoodling snails this morning.

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You might say “so what?”, cows are usually in fields. True–but these cows haven’t been in the field at the back since October; they’ve been cooped up in the barn all winter. Sorry to go on about it, but something’s up.

My father spent a year in Arizona in 1944 training to be a fighter pilot.

Dad is under the '2'- -far left

He  returned with a strong affection for America and a permanent tan. He used to delight us kids, about this time of the year, by quoting the so-called Brooklyn National Anthem “Ode to Spring”– which went:

Da spring is sprung
Da grass is riz
I wonder where dem boidies is?

Dem boids is on der wing.
Ain’t dat absoid?
Der little wings is on der boid!

There’s plenty of blue tit traffic to and from the bird table–which leans over the field where the cows are enjoying the fresh pasture.

The almond blossom is out–almost–enjoying the sunshine.

Lautrec market is buzzing–a smaller version of Realmont–and there’s a queue at the fish stall. Pots of daffodils are for sale at the épicerie [grocer] and people are talking in that animated fashion that indicates they know something’s up.

I pop into the tiny branch of the bank to do a transfer. Even the Manager is in a good mood.

No room for complacency though. He reminds me, with a bank manager’s useful caution, that things can change again and I remember that this time last year, there was snow on the ground.

Haiku from mid-March 2010:

A chill north wind–cuts,

And keeps the snow from melting,

In the midday sun.

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