My garden is a joy, a fizzing sherbet of yellow and acid green and I can’t post photographs because I’m in The North, visiting, and very far away from any kind of technology that would allow me to do so (I’ve cranked up the old pc and have made a coffee and scrubbed the kitchen while it very gently warmed up to lift off…). I planted Euphorbia amygdaloides Robbiae last autumn and have been waiting for its butterfly-bright flowers to open all winter. And they have: tall bracts of yellow-green flowers that remain steadfastly undiminished by pelting rain. The daffodils planted among them have bowed to the weight of Monday’s downpour but not the Euphorbia, it’s strong, upright, defiant. There’s a metaphor in there somewhere…
The Chaenomeles nivalis has been in bloom for weeks now, if not months. Some flowers have only just burst, others have wilted and browned and become slippery-rotten. It’s been its best year yet and I’m waiting to see how many flowers hatch into small, hard, unprepossessing fruit. Edible and a fine addition to an apple pie but nothing compared to the truly magnificent, pendulous quinces with which I make jelly and which vanishes down the gullets of small children, spoon by quivering rosy spoon.
I travelled with the children on the West Coast main line yesterday along with several thousand other people who had also sharpened their elbows in preparation for the battle for a seat (reservations mean nothing). Conclusion: defibrilators ought to be compulsory kit in every carriage. There’s always an overly red puffing chap, hard bellied and broken veined trying to squeeze a suitcase the size of an elephant into the overhead gap. I fear for him…..
Having announced to the carriage my children’s predilection for throwing up on pendolinos (people flee…we get our seats) we headed north. From the window somewhere in Northamptonshire I saw a field of oilseed rape luminous yellow against a dark slategrey sky. The perfect unblended meeting of colour. Glorious.