Standing and looking

The last few months have been strange. We are lucky here on the lane away from the centres of population. Walking up the lane and along the narrow country lanes and roads is calming and grounding in a world that seems set on madness.

It reminds me if I didn’t already appreciate it, how important the natural world is. Walking the lane becomes something of a meditation and standing in the rain just looking around is restful.

On one walk while standing and looking around a tiny movement caught my eye on the side of a rock. Ants, lots of them, scurrying around, visible only because some mossy covering had been recently pulled back. Often it is the very small things. I don’t know if you ever played Kim’s game as a child but in that game, a tray with different objects is presented and then taken away and one removed. When it is brought back you have to guess what is missing. The lane is a little like that. I walk past an area and something seems changed,sometimes something added, or something taken away. The ants are a case in point but so are the solitary orchids that appear or the sudden sight of new hazelnuts carefully camouflaged among the leaves of the bushes until a fallen group make me look further.

George the cat has used the time over the last months to widen his territory and move further up the lane in search of wild places. He has now decided that tracking us on our walks is a useful way to while away some time – if watching the cattle in the fields or finding unfortunate shrews is not possible. George makes his way up the lane through the hedges and fields, only revealing himself when he feels he has reached a place that he can watch from. Lying in the long grass with white clover and daisies around him he looks quite regal. The return walk is marked by George deigning to walk down the lane with us in full view -I think he has developed a form of people herding, taking us back in order to fill his food bowl.

I have not posted for a while, not because of lockdown but because I have been finishing the novel I have been writing. Now it is being made ready fro publication and I have been working on the paintings which will form the front and back covers.

I’ll tell you more about that in my next blog.

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