... outside my office window today; the vine leaves are turning…pale yellow, gold, rusting red; I couldn't see the fields to either side of the house - an almost impenetrable grey blanketing shrouded them, hanging in the air, hiding the originators of the birdsong which floated through, ethereally, disembodied. Closer to the house, near to the bird table, a Magpie was waiting on the pergola…waiting to dive down to eat the left-over cat food that I had put out from last night - nothing wasted here!…
Two Robins were shouting at each other, while an insignificant little Dunnock sat in the arch branches, waiting for this morning's offerings of breadcrumbs, grated cheese and sunflower seed. (Oh dear...I have run out of sunflower seed. ) The pervading atmosphere was of a stillness, a waiting between two seasons, though the direction is inevitable. The year turns, we move on towards the darker days, longer nights and falling leaves. All is as it should be.
…but inside Autumn Cottage, all has changed. Semi retirement has arrived for one of the inhabitants - and with it, a new pattern to my days. Surprisingly, with more leisure time has come much more activity - more 'getting out and about' - more living life, more seen, more done, more created, more recorded. I don't think I'm alone in realising that there is not enough time in one lifetime to squeeze in all that one begins to appreciate as we age - but that does not stop me trying!
Over just the last two weeks, here are some of the places that have been 'on the menu' for me - and I'm looking forward to sharing many more tasty bites to come!
Two flaming trees at the entrance to The Sir Harold Hillier Gardens & Arboretum
Pampas grass planted to great effect, with the sunlight streaming through them in the Winter Garden
The Lower Pool
Nerines outside Jermyn's House
Red leaved Banana (Musa) with Buddleia
Even more spectacular bark on a Tilia (Lime) tree in the Education garden - wonderful inspiration for textile (and other) artists
Virginia creeper + ? on the end wall of the Education Centre