Only a few half live petals remain on this faded hydrangea. It recalls a photograph posted by Lucy Kempton on box-elder a few weeks ago. But I hope she will agree that the image bears repetition.
From our bedroom window as I sip my morning tea, I watch a milky sun streak narrow clouds with yellow and curd-white behind the tulip tree. The clouds range in tone from pearl grey, through the purplish grey called Paynes grey to the ever so gentle misty grey of the ring doves which inhabit the Grove.
Children and grandchildren are now to old for nursery toys and baby clothes, but the shop called Children's Salon in the High Street, draws us in with its compulsive warmth . A colourful, toy town train circulates on a track suspended on a shelf just below the ceiling; it is difficult to refrain from playing with the marble runs, xylophones and spinning tops on display. "We just came into play," I say to the shop assistant. "That's what I do," she says. I remember a song by the early blues singer, Leadbelly with the refrain "all the lil' chidren get so happy when it's Christmas time, Christmas time." Its charming simplicity still disturbs me.