Wednesday, 3 January 2018

Abstract Landscape Painter.  Rural Dweller.  Lover of Modernist Art and Design.

3 January

3.15am.  The pattering of tiny paws again.  Millie is pacing due to the recent arrival of storm Eleanor.  The wind is howling round the cottage and the trees outside the window are thrashing and creaking.  The wheelbarrow has been transported from its usual peaceful posture and its handle is clanging intermittently against a metal container, as if someone is randomly ringing a tuneless bell.  We allow the anxious dog to jump up and bury herself rapidly beneath a woollen blanket which lies on top of the duvet at the foot of the bed.  She curls up between two pairs of feet. She inhales a short gasp and then exhales a long....slow....breath....hhhhhhhhhhh - relief!

We are up at 5.30am for B’s journey to work, which does not seem like a good idea in the present conditions.  Left alone (Millie is still buried under the blanket) I tend to the stove through which the air is gusting, despite the fact that both the vents are shut tight.  I find just one small spark amidst the bed of ash, but it is enough to light fresh paper and kindling, and very soon a small friendly glow is warming the coffee pot and lighting the darkness of a winter morning.  Somehow, when one is alone, a fire is companionship.

Later in the morning I take Millie for a walk around the old airfield.  We get blown along the route by Eleanor, who is still with us, shoving an invisible hand into our backs!  I pause to look at some trees and to take a couple of photos, but we still complete the route several minutes faster than usual.  Shortly before home, I catch a glimpse of three, small, stocky little birds in the hedgerow.  They have deep-apricot coloured chests and black caps.  The bullfinches move along the line of brambles and bushes in front of us, in a kind of Mexican wave.  

When we return, I head straight into my little studio, crank up the fan heater and switch on the radio.  It’s good to be back.

All text & images ©2018 Carol Saunderson