Sunday, April 30, 2006


Enough of the DC (Demon child) for the time being.

She's had 2 consecutive blogs to herself, thats enough for now.

(the squalor is already encroaching once again in her room.

I have promised to say nothing.
I must bite my tongue, grit my teeth, keep a grip.
I will be strong)

This is what I am doing at the moment in my weaving class:

The contraption is an "inkle" loom - a very ancient form of weaving used for straps and braids.

This length will be cut into shorter lengths to make handles for some little bags which I have already woven.

(But not yet sewn together...
Must finish one project before going on the next...
Must finish one project before going on the next...
Must finish one project before going on the next...
Must finish one project before going on the next...
Must finish one project before going on the next...)

The world of textiles - spinning, weaving, knitting - goes on for ever. There is always more to learn, amazing techniques and both very ancient and very contemporary ways of using them.

I'm committed to working on projects which will use some of the yarns, fleece etc. which I already have - rather than projects which will require me to add more to my already over-full stores. Its a good aim, though I tend to panic that I will run out of something, buy more, and then have surplus... which will need to be used at some point....
And then I quite often pick things up (unmissable bargains, obviously) at boot fairs or charity shops.
And so it goes on forever.

Which suits me pretty well. Its a wonderfully therapeutic activity, to which I intend to devote more time.

And its very satisfying to be able to make gifts which my 18-20 year old nieces think are cool!

Friday, April 28, 2006

The Swamp

Through the keyhold. Part 2.

These are brand new warnings which have arrived on LG's door over the last 24 hours.
(The pics will all enlarge if you click on them)

(Note the slashes cut into this last one - these, I think, are supposed to represent damage inflicted by talons and/or edged weapons)

They fit rather well with her current most usual state of mind, which is more DC (Demon Child) than LG (Little Gem).

One of our Big Plans for Easter was a Spring-clean in her bedroom the swamp.


(for "our Big Plan" read "My Plan" for which (with various incentives) I managed to elicit agreement from the DC)
Parenting fosters such good negotiation skills.

I quite like Spring-cleaning.
Its the explicit only-once-a-year-ness of it.

Having done too much tidying up for LG in her bedroom in the past, and with the stage of her life approaching when we are increasingly having to ignore whatever lurks behind her door, I'm trying - while there may still just be time - to make it at least feasible for her to keep it all under control.

Should she ever want to.
Just on the off-chance.

She does actually quite like it to be tidy, she just doesn't have the will to do it, or the belief that she can.

One of LG's particular problems (apart from her general slobbiness) is the sheer quantity of STUFF she has in her room.

I blame M, myself, of course (one of the useful features of husbands/partners - someone else to blame).

He has been the major purchaser over the years of animals and other [and particularly larger] toys and activities - forts, castles, dragon lego, robot dogs, space ships, armour and general weaponry.

M comes from a generous-to-a-fault family, and grew up with a mother who is extremely generous, but who had trouble making ends meet and hence no money to spare, and an exceedingly stingy and tyrannical father (he was the exception) (God rest his soul) [if he had one, which I kind of doubt].

And M has (by his own admission) found it hard to stop himself buying her just FAR TOO MUCH STUFF. Not one set of dragon lego, not 2, but 3 or 4. Not one robot dog but 2,
and a robot cat.
[Better by far, of course, than a room full of Barbies.]

The animals have got particularly out of hand.
Especially as she has grown, and there is less room for them in the bed these days.
The animals merit a post all to themselves, which will follow in due course.

{I will say nothing about the books, of which I have been [and will continue to be] the main purchaser.
I do not apologise.
It is necessary to have too many books.
We can always find room for more books.}

SO - TOO MUCH STUFF and LG the DC sometimes just doesn't really know where to start, even on the odd occasion when she might want to tidy her room a bit.

Hence our Easter purge.

With the promise that I need never go into her room again if she doesn't want me to, LG was actually reasonably amenable to the purging, and worked quite hard. At least 3 large carrier bags of STUFF went into the rubbish bin. 3 or 4 large bags of GOOD STUFF were turned out for the school fair.

Here are some before/after pictures. You may imagine some of what we went through in between.







Yes, I know she still has FAR TOO MUCH STUFF.
But, we are getting there.

She now has room to sit at - or even under - her desk.

She can now find and put away (should she ever want to - just on the off-chance) all her books.

She now has a whole shelf just for her dragon collection.

It is now possible to walk across the room without risk of stepping in bottles of ink/trays of candles and incense sticks/small and hence dangerously unnoticeable bits of lego/piles of edged weapons/unfinished projects/dragon drawings/scoobie doos/dirty pants, socks, & pajamas.

How long this will continue to be the case - who knows?

Not that I am allowed in, of course, except with explicit permission.
(I've almost learned not only to knock on the door, but also to wait for an answer)

Except at bedtime.
The DC LG does still like to be tucked into bed, with lots of hugs and kisses.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

Through the keyhole

LG's bedroom door.
Do you think she's trying to tell us something?

(sorry these aren't ever so clear, they will enlarge if you click on them) :

As you can see from the above I have already contravened some of LG's explicit instuctions, by having the temerity to Lift the Flap. Da da da da da da da da retribution will no doubt follow if she ever finds out.

I then took the further risk of venturing into said Swamp over the Easter break. "Swamp" is an insufficiently precise or squalid word to describe the state of it.

But I had a Plan. Look out for my next post on the topic of the state of the little girl's bedroom.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Best ever dessert

As we were entertaining at the weekend - and having just watched a lot of very fit people running the start of a very long race (see yesterday's blog) - we had to have a decadent dessert.

We don't often have desserts - yoghurt, fruit, "bread and it". But guests are an excellent excuse, and this is one of the best desserts ever, particularly if you love dark/bitter chocolate - this is rather different from most particularly because of the cardamom.

It came from a magazine, if I remember rightly I furtively tore out the page in the dentist's waiting room. Furtive because the magazine belonged to the surgery, not furtive because it is so bad for teeth.

One of the best bad things I ever did, its wonderful, pretty easy to make, and freezes well too (if there is ever any left.....). Here is the recipe:

Bitter chocolate, coffee and cardamom truffle cake.
Serves 8-10.

340g dark chocolate (70% cocoa solids)
400 ml milk
30g green cardamom pods
6g instant coffee
2 tbsp. caster sugar
800ml double cream
65g blanched almonds, roasted (if you like), roughly chopped.

Have ready a 20cm. cake tin lined with clingfilm or greaseproof paper/baking parchment.

Reduce the milk with the crushed cardamom pods by a third, till its a dark creamy yellow, then strain.
(I usually let it go too far and then have to add a bit of milk to make up the quantity again).
Break up the chocolate, melt in a bain-marie (I use the microwave, which is fine).
Add the coffee to the hot milk and some sugar to cancel out the bitterness. (this is very much to taste - I only use about 1 tbsp not 2 - depends on the bitterness of the coffee/chocolate).

Whip the cream till it just begins to thicken (over-whipping the cream spoils the texture).
Gently fold in the melted chocolate and milk/coffee mixtures. (Don't combine the chocolate and coffee mixtures first). You can now taste and add a bit more sugar if needed.

Cover the base of the tin with the almonds, spoon the mixture in and chill for about an hour till firm and set (or take out of the mould and then sprinkle with almonds).

Good with cream, yoghurt, creme fraiche - or just by its lovely self.

Monday, April 24, 2006


Phew! template all sorted. My sidebar has returned (with a couple of extra links - v. good blogging advice, and wonderful art from a friend living in France) (everyone leaves Woolwich.....)

Thanks for everyone who offered advice and encouragement.

Tho' now my blog is back the way it was, I'm a bit bored with it.
Might try a bit more tweaking - but I'll keep it all backed up this time and I now have a PC emulator for one of our Macs, so I can run Internet Explorer and actually check what you are seeing, those of you not yet using Mozilla Firefox!!

I think this blog does need a spring clean - but had to get the essential repairs done first.

This is what M. brought back for me from his day out in London on Saturday:

Its actually not too bad a likeness, close up. Tho' he's a lot shorter than on TV.

And he's fully poseable.
I make no further comment.

I now face a dilemma: do I take him out of the packaging, to get dusty, depreciate in value (!)[there are those who worry about such things, apparently] and probably lose his little tiny sonic screwdriver? or do I leave him in the blisterpack, which is far less fun (and not at all poseable)?

The London Marathon went past the end of our road on Sunday. We met up with RW and family, and stood for an hour clapping, shouting, cheering and throwing money. It was great fun. Me and LG, RW, Mr.RW and RW's oldest.

M. was still in bed. Couldn't think of anything more tedious, apparently. Once again, I refrain from further comment. He cooked the dinner anyway.

The marathon started out like this:

went on like this:

for nearly an hour:

with bits of this:

and some of this:

and even this:

and this woman dressed as a whoopie cushion:

and it ended like this:

They just kept coming, its quite amazing.
After an hour of clapping, the palms of my hands felt strangely smooth, tingly and very very itchy.

Some runners helpfully had their names written clearly on their tops/foreheads/somewhere, so that we could bawl out personalised encouragement. Many of them were also/instead wearing the names of the charity for which they were collecting money, as well as their numbers of course. "Come on, Flora!!"

I did almost, at one point, find myself yelling "Go Prostate!!!".

RW & Co. then came back with us for lunch and some of the afternoon, which was luvverly.

See her blog, I think she has moving pictures for you!

Normal Service

I'm just trying to sort out a template problem, so my blog might look a bit strange for a while, and there may be things coming and going.....

Normal service will be resumed as soon as possible.

Friday, April 21, 2006


I have to just post a few lines, before bed, about how funny the new series of Green Wing is.

I don't often genuinely LOL, but this evening I really did LMFAO.

I think this series is even better than the last one.

One high point was the consultant radiographer actually eating the gall bladder of a patient in surgery. Unbelievably disgusting, eeewwwwwww, unfeasible, outrageous, just the right side of almost-believable, bloody hilarious.
Probably doesn't sound funny at all if you haven't seen it,
but in context and in relation to the characters it really really was.
I did have my hands over my mouth aghast, but it just slayed me.

Also the personnel manager finally getting the glasses she clearly needs
and freaking out at the for-once-crystal-clear sight of her own hands and eyes.
"Chicken feet, arrgh - my eyes, my eyes, my old old eyes, chicken feet!!!"

And finally, a top quote from tonight's episode:
"You really are are nicer than you seem."

If you haven't seen it and have the opportunity to - WATCH IT!

Bye for now. I will be trying to sort out my template tomorrow,
as my sidebar keeps slipping and it looks completely out of whack on
internet explorer.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Bit of a (glum) rant

Personal up-date first (feel free to skip this), food for thought below that.
But skip that too if you want to, its a bit of a glum rant.
I'd go straight to the comments if I were you, they might be more entertaining.

Personal up-date.

Too many late nights and bottles of wine over the Easter break. Possibly also too much time at home with M and LG (who both have to be kicked a fair bit to get them out of the house). Some of the Easter break has been pretty good, relaxed, enjoyable etc. Some not so much. Feeling a bit limp this week as we got back into "normal" routines.

My situation at home has improved quite a bit, at least in some ways. Progress has been made, levels of understanding and communicated have improved. But its hard to live with someone who is depressed. It takes so much concentration sometimes to stop myself getting sucked into the mire of despair. And there would we be? Both stuck like slugs in a slimy swamp.

(No, Betty and Trac, that would NOT be a good thing to be).
(It occurred to me this morning that "Grace la Limace" is very very close to "Grace la Grimace".)

So, I have had to swing into action again, striking out against the current, concentrating hard to keep it all together, keeping positive things in focus. Swimming first thing Tuesday morning [as a result of last-minute resolve to take control of the day] - I was bloody knackered but it felt good, an almost empty pool with no splishy splashy school kids. I wrote this blog in my head whilst doing my lengths, lets hope I can remember the rest of it.

Some great charity shop bargains. (Something else for Tat, hee hee). I felt brighter already, despite having to return home to the essays which were still trapped in the study, silently yelling. (Ungrammatically, obviously, and using words and phrases borrowed from sources more clever than themselves).

Wednesday, counselling and then worky work.

Weaving today. Hurray. Tho' it was pouring with rain by the time I was all prepared to leave on my bike, so I walked and arrived late. Had to leave early for a school-journey meeting with LG. But good bits in between. Despite unscheduled arrival of the painters, which caught me unusually unprepared. (Nearly all my bags/backpacks/bike panniers/satchels/pockets/cases etc. etc. etc. have an array of discreetly packaged "feminine items" lurking amidst the old packets of polos, defunct shopping lists, tissues and paperclips. Not today.) Bloody menopause.

So - no swimming tomorrow as had planned. No yoga till next week because of Easter break. PTB. But M has sort of suggested brunch/lunch, so might manage that before work in the afternoon. Which might be sort of nice. Might.

Bit of a rant.

It was more than a bit depressing to read in this
weekend paper
that the UK has now reached the point in the year where we have effectively got through that share of the resources which we use (annually) which actually come from the UK. We use more than 3 times our share of the world's resources, so for 2/3 of the year we are living off other people elsewhere at the cost of their welfare, and that of the planet.

We in this country are too inclined to feel smug because we think the USA is much worse than us in terms of ecological responsibility but we could go a long way further before we even begin to take our own global and ecological responsibility seriously enough. India consumes only 0.4% of its share of the world's resources, and even China - which is "developing" fast - only 0.8%.

Apparently happiness levels in the UK (though I don't know what criteria were used to assess this) are thought by some to have peaked in the summer of 1976. I remember it well. It was very hot. I was 16. I was certainly very very happy. Remember those floaty Mateus Rose adverts? it really was quite like that at times!
A range of kinds of evidence (apparently) show levels of well-being/happiness declining, while consumption increases, most of all in "developed" countries..

The article gave lots of statistics about relative imports and exports - apparently the import-export trade in chocolate covered waffles between the UK and Ireland is 3,500 tonnes travelling each way annually. ???

We import slightly more gingerbread than we export annually. We import 1,500 tonnes of potatoes from Germany - and also export the same amount back to them. We exchange not-far-from-equal quantities of chicken with Fance each year. So that goes some way to explaining all the Norbert Dentrassangles which Luce has been spotting recently. They are all full of gingerbread and chocolate-covered waffles. {If you're fed up with this, read her blog. Its more fun}
We even import expertise (esp. medical) from other parts of the world which really need it more than we do.

The article concludes "(this is) a towering monument to economic and environmental inefficiency... meaning-less and wasteful... More profoundly, it matters because we face upheaval from potentially irreversible climate change due, in large part, to the burning of fuel, whilst at the same time there is rising conflict over access to dwindling oil supplies. ... a global economy built on, and blind to, its own fossil fuel dependence simply cannot survive in its current form."

Its bloody depressing, thats my incisive conclusion.

This all particularly gave me food for thought because I had just been reading the following, from "News from Nowhere" written in 1890 by William Morris (yes, he of the Arts and Crafts, flowery wallpaper & Liberty fabrics). He imagines a future utopian England, 100 years in his future. One of the residents of this utopia describes how society and trade initially developed from the nineteenth century onwards (before "a change" came about): the last age of civilization men had got into a vicious circle in the matter of production of wares. They had reached a wonderful facility of production, and in order to make the most of that facility they had gradually created (or allowed to grow) a most elaborate system of buying and selling, which has been called the World Market; and that World-Market, once set a-going, forced them to go on making more and more of these wares, whether they needed them or not. So that while (of course) they could not free themselves from the toil of making real necessaries, they created in a never ending series sham or artificial necessaries...By all this they burdened themselves with a prodigious mass of work merely for the sake of keeping their wretched system going. ... The whole community, in fact, was cast into the jaws of this ravening monster, "the cheap production" forced upon it by the World-Market....

...The appetite of the World-Market grew with what it fed on: the countries within the ring of "civilization" (that is, organized misery) were glutted with the abortions of the market and force and fraud were used unsparingly to "open up" countries outside that pale.... When the civilized World-Market coveted a country not yet in its clutches, some transparent pretext was found - the suppression of a slavery different from, and not so cruel as that of commerce; the pushing of a religion no longer believed in by its promoters; the "rescue" of some desperado or homicidal madman whose misdeeds had got him into trouble amongst the natives of the "barbarous" country - any stick, in short, which would beat the dog at all. Then some bold, unprincipled, ignorant adventurer was found (no difficult task in the days of competition), and he was bribed to "create a market" by breaking up whatever traditional society there might be in the doomed country, and by destroying whatever leisure or pleasure he found there. He forced wares on the native which they did not want, and took their natural products in "exchange", as this form of robbery was called, and thereby he "created new wants", to supply which (that is, to be allowed to live by their new masters) the hapless helpless people had to sell themselves into the slavery of hopeless toil so that they mighy have something wherewith to purchase the nullities of "civilisation".

Bloody hell, eh?

[see how those "bloody"s are seeping back in? I blame the bloody hormones.]

The utopia Morris imagines developed after a revolution against this "system" and against traditional forms of government and education. Hmm, anti-globalisation protests, anyone?

Its a rather unrealistic idyll he describes, a quaintly, medievally rural society where everyone loves work as much as leisure, wearing lovely robes (covered with woven or embroidered willow leaves or chrysanthemums, no doubt) and taking pleasure in the production of beautifully hand-crafted wares. Yeah, right. [Though they do all get to choose what manner of work they do - maybe even M would enjoy work if it could involve diddling around and playing on the computer all day].

However - despite the fact that Morris's utopia isn't very convincing in this twenty-first century, (and its not much good as a novel to be honest) I'm still quite gob-smacked at the astounding prescience of his writing - foreseeing where world trade, industry, finance and politics might lead in a future fairly long after his own time.

So where might that leave me? I buy fair trade bananas and chocolate, for goodness sake! How much does that let me off the hook? Should I be buying cheap grapefruit in the market? Should I buy green beans from Africa in the winter?

Its easy to feel guilty and hard to know how to shop these days.

I feel a bit like Neil from the Young Ones now.
Didn't want to bring you down. Normal service of trivia and nonsense will resume soon.

In the meantime here are some blooming blossoms.

Final pictures of the magnificent magnolia - its now at the peak of its wonderfulness, there will be no more photos of it this year. I haven't got the will to document its decline as the petals drop and disintegrate into brown slime on the pavement... no no no must fight that undertow!

Its wonderful walking beneath its cool pink loveliness on the way to school, it refreshes my

So does Greenwich Park, where I took these pictures (which was also a good excuse to stop and have a rest half way up the hill with too much shopping on my bike).


And the winner of my made up meme is: - Glitter Graphics - Glitter Graphics

who will be conferring the names "Trac" and "Elvis" on 2 dillos (no thats NOT dildos) of her choice.

And in tribute to - Glitter Graphics - Glitter Graphics

whose questions were the funniest, and who has given us all so much fun with this excellent made up meme, this slug dillo, which she so loved, will henceforth be known as Betty (or Rosemary, if you prefer?) :

Wednesday, April 19, 2006


My Questions & Answers (and winners):

1. What is the most unhealthy thing you enjoy eating?
Pork scratchings.
Trac is closer than anyone: "What otherwise horrible food can I not resist after a pint or two of nice British Ale?" - I've only ever eaten/wanted to eat them when also drinking nice British Ale.

2. What is your family/household fetish?
Trac - closest again, they certainly are slotted into most spare corners of our house.

3. Describe your most disastrous outfit.
Orange flared jeans, baggy flowery smock top with long puffy sleeves, long white crotcheted waistcoat.
Wendy - as you say, not such a disastrous outfit when I was 15, would be now! (on me anyway!)

4. What is (one of) your secret pleasure(s)?
Digestive biscuits with (lots of) peanut butter.
Wendy. Secret because M tells me to hide digestive biscuits from him.

5. Whats the most dishonest thing you've ever done?
Stealing flowers from other peoples’ gardens.
Wendy. I was 7/8, felt guilty, but couldn't stop myself. Now I'm just content with photographing flowers/trees in other peoples' gardens. Image/electronic theft.

6. Whats the ugliest thing in your kitchen?
Seriously. Its awful but I can't do without it. Must buy/make a better one.

7. What is your family famous for?
Walking very fast.
Absolutely true.

8. Something you do which might be described as "sad".
Checking my blog for comments ALL THE TIME
Meg possibly closest, tho' I don't think its my worst habit, actually.

9. Your worst ever accident.
Smashing through a glass door, wrist-first.
My sister was the other side (bathroom door), we were arguing, she had stitches in big toe, I had stitches in wrist. Scarey.

10. Whats the strangest thing you've ever eaten?
Sheeps’ feet.
Meg. In France, M ordered this on persuasion of good (French) friend in Aveyron, fabulous restaurant. I only tried, couldn't have eaten much! Great flavour, exceedingly gluey.

11. Your age when you had your first snog?
Dons. Yes, I remember it well.....

12. The country which you'd most like to visit (but haven't)?
Dons is closest - most exotic holiday I'd like. (tho' any exotic holiday would do really...)

13. Something you dislike about your appearance?
The back of my head.

14. Your worst ever fancy-dress costume.
A toothbrush.
My sister was dressed as the toothpaste, but we got split up by age and hence both looked extremely odd and inexplicable. I was about 6 or 7 and was humiliated and very upset.

15. If you had a totem animal (or daemon, a la Pullmann) what would it be?
Meg. Otters move quickly, are rarely still, good swimmers, sociable, like to have fun and splash around in water.

16. Where can you see tigers?
“Only in Kenya”
Trac - close enough! Didn't know it was that famous - it certainly is that annoying.

17. Don't you think thats enough questions?

This means that everyone who tried this got 3 questions right or close, except Betty, and she gets 3 points for being so very very very funny especially on 1, 4, 6, 7, 10, 11, 14.

So you all win.

If anyone wants to go for a tie-break, here it is - what is the question, when the answer is:

An armadillo (of your choice, if you like) will be named after you.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006


Okay, here it is. Thanks to Betty, such an excellent idea.

These are my answers.
All you have to do is work out what the questions are.

They may or may not be similar to
Betty's questions,
more or less.
But then again, they might not be.

1. Pork scratchings.

2. Armadillos.

3. Orange flared jeans, baggy flowery smock top with long puffy sleeves, long white crotcheted waistcoat.

4. Digestive biscuits with (lots of) peanut butter.

5. Stealing flowers from other peoples’ gardens.

6. A tea-cosy.

7. Walking very fast.

8. Checking my blog for comments TOO FREQUENTLY.

9. It involvied a glass door, toes, wrists and (nearly) arteries.

10. Sheeps’ feet.

11. 14.

12. China.

13. The back of my head.

14. A toothbrush.

15. Otter.

16. “Only in Kenya”

17. Yes.

There may or not be a prize for the winner. Though confirmation of your smart-arse-ness should surely be sufficient reward. Maybe I could commission Betty to write you something.....

Sunday, April 16, 2006

The good & the great

Good and pretty great actually:

New Dr. Who.

Excellent good fun, first of the new series yesterday evening.
Not the best story ever, but it was okay - great zombie moments - and DT and BP did the job. No, I don't think he's as sexy as CE, (sorry Trac, he's just a bit too pretty) but he's pretty okay.


And in other news.....

Possibly weird but also very good:

The good old National Trust have an ugly vegetable competition - all gardeners take note.
Encouraging us not to succumb to the supermarket trend for perfectly formed (according to what criteria?) and standardised veg. We're aware of the need to resist Western culture's body-facism, but here we can also fight vegetable facism. The site includes handy tips on how to grow non-standard veg. Luce and Meg - we expect great things from your allotments. (are you back yet????)


Simply weird:
Did you know there is a pig olympics
Strange but true.
They run

they jump

they jump through hoops

they swim

who knows, it seems they might even fly.


Good and great:
I was delighted to learn from a reputable and trustworthy
source (good enough for me, anyway) that although women may be more prone to depression than men, there is research recently published which suggests that older women who have one or two (alcoholic) drinks a day may be guarding themselves against declining brain function. Those in the test who drank scored 20% higher in mental cogition tests than those who didn't.

Which only goes to show, I've been right all along.
Average age of those tested was 69, but it seems to me that anything over 39 is old, in terms of some criteria. Isn't that right?


PS Not sure what category this comes in.
Apparently I'm 39% slut.
I couldn't possibly say if thats good or bad.
Test comes from
this blog.

Saturday, April 15, 2006


Have a great weekend.


Poor rosemary

Its Gone.

My poor, sad shrivelled Rosemary is gone.
Once lush and fragrant, it withered and shrank, dusty and dead.

This is the space where once it was.

Click here
for the sad story of the Rosemary beetles and how they ravaged and decimated my rosemary bush.
These pictures are rather small because they are so sad. Click to enlarge if you must.

I decided I couldn't face another spring/summer of squishing the shiny little fellows, particularly as they'd probably just be back again next year. My purple sage is also at risk, I found a couple of rosemary beetles chomping away on that. They are also partial at times, to thyme apparently.

So, its gone.

I will restrain myself from lengthy reflections on the symbolic/metaphorical significance of rosemary (mentioned in my earlier blog, and see
this blog
for a poignant piece of writing about rosemary). Suffice it to say that the roots were surprisingly deep and hard to shift, this was an extremely tough and tenacious plant which didn't want to move - hanging on for dear life it was. It became pitifully wrenched and dismembered in the process, which involved much sweating and an aching back.

It is now in a black bag in the wheelie bin.

However - I did find one stem which had already begun to root itself in the soil - with a little care and attention, this should flourish and grow. There will still be rosemary in my garden.

Its that dearest freshness deep down things again. RW was asking where that was from, its one of my favourite poems - God's Grandeur, by Gerard Manley Hopkins, written towards the end of the nineteenth century - so I will quote it in full:

The world is charged with the grandeur of God
It will flame out, like shining from shook foil;
It gathers to a greatness like the ooze of oil
Crushed. Why do men then now not reck his rod?
Generations have trod, have trod, have trod;
And all is bleared with trade; bleared, smeared with toil;
And wears man's smudge and shares his smell: the earth
Is bare now, nor can foot feel being shod.

And for all that, Nature is never spent;
There lives the dearest freshness deep down things;
And though the last lights off the black West went
Oh, morning, at the brown brink eastwards, springs -
Because the Holy Ghost over the bent
World broods with warm breast and with ah! bright wings.

This really needs to be read aloud to feel the rhythm and cadences. Go on - read it to yourself or whoever is with you!

And whilst on the theme of the dearest freshness of Nature,
here are the latest pictures of the camelia, and the magnolia,
both just down the road from us - almost in glorious full bloom now, defying the
(mostly) cold and rainy weather (f***ng rain!):

Nothing more on the subject of slugs, except this - Dillo No. 23. I can't think why it didn't occur to me to include this with my previous post, it is so very slug-like. And I have to admit I have never really liked it, but no doubt Trac and Betty will find it rather attractive.