Pattern on the sand, caused by the tide/wave motions (I think)
Well, it’s been here for a while really…We’ve had a couple of warm days, but mainly it’s been quite cold, still. But then, it is only April. I have, at last, been to B&Q today and bought some plants. I went on the bus. I bought some heathers, some pansies, some lavender, and a pathetic-looking tulip because it was on the sale shelf and I felt sorry for it, but also partly because it’s called “Für Elise”, and our friends have a daughter called Elise. I might give her the tulip to look after if it doesn’t die. So, this afternoon I did some weeding and planted a couple of the heathers. Then it got too cold, so I went in. Things are starting to look more spring-like; the forsythia is now in full bloom, the daffodils have been and gone. The tulips’ leaves have come out, but no sign of flowers yet. I discovered some kind of narcissi in a couple of pots I’d piled up in a corner near the shed (this is where pots go when there is no room in the shed), so that was a nice surprise!
Last weekend, Mr C and I went to the British Museum with my mum. She wanted to go to see the Ice Age Art exhibition, which we did, and very fascinating it was too. I found it quite hard to take in how old the objects were. I hadn’t been to the British Museum at all before, so I was quite excited to go, and I really loved it. Now we know how easy it is to get there we will go again (I hope). I think the Lion Man in the Ice Age Art exhibition was my favourite object of the ones I saw, but I also liked the huge Assyrian lion (and lots of other things). Last night I dreamed that I was holding a large cat. Not as big as a lion, more like the size of our neighbour, Big Cat (AKA Fat Cat).
Other things I’ve been doing include knitting gloves and waiting for trains. At least we had a nice double rainbow to look at when the trains were delayed on Thursday:
I’ve been practicing using double-pointed needles (dpns) and made another hat. This one also turned out smaller than I expected, but now I’ve realised that I had measured my head wrongly and it is actually much bigger than I thought it was. Haha. So this hat too has gone to a child of my acquaintance. The pattern is Meret, by Woolly Wormhead.
Going to exhibitions
Well, an exhibition. We went to see the Ansel Adams exhibition at the National Maritime Museum last Saturday. It was very good. I didn’t really know anything about Ansel Adams before, other than that he was famous photographer, so it was good to learn more about him as well as seeing lots of his photos of water (unsurprisingly, given the location, the theme of the exhibition is “Photography from the Mountains to the Sea”). Going to the exhibition made me feel a bit better about my own photography. I’ve never been quite sure whether it is OK to edit photos after you’ve taken them, or whether this is really ‘cheating’; but Ansel Adams did this as a matter of course. He would, apparently, spend hours in the darkroom developing lots of different prints of the same picture, changing aspects of it until he was happy with the outcome. Obviously editing pictures in a darkroom takes a lot more skill than doing it on a computer, but Ansel Adams was enthusiastic about the possibilities of using computers in photography – there was a film clip at the exhibition of him talking about it. He didn’t live to see the ‘digital photography revolution’ (he died in 1984), but I think he would have been quite excited by it.
We’ve had snow here again this weekend. While we haven’t had such awful weather as in other parts of the country, it is still annoying. I’m fed up with the cold and the grey and the damp…as I expect most other people in the country are. The daffodils have come up, and are struggling bravely on - they must be quite hardy as they keep bouncing back, when the snow allows!
Having Mr C’s friend to stay for a week
One of Mr C’s childhood friends from Malaysia has been to stay for a week. He just left this morning. It was good to see him again, and I think Mr C enjoyed catching up with him and another friend from Malaysia who actually lives in London but who he hadn’t seen for a long time. Mr C’s friend was quite intrepid, and braved the railways on his own – with varying degrees of success! He brought some Malaysian food over with him, so I’m looking forward to eating lots of noodles soon…
Watching things grow
Despite the continuing cold weather things are starting to grow and blossom (see e.g. daffodils, above). The orchid has also decided to flower this year, after taking a break from flowering last year, which is nice. I was worried it wouldn’t flower ever again, but I was wrong.
Last week, Mr C and I went to visit his family (or rather our family) in the wilds of Nottinghamshire. On the way, we stopped off at my parents’ house and managed to see a variety of my relatives. It is an odd fact that, even though the majority of my family live in England, we seem to see them less often than we see Mr C’s family who live on the other side of the world. Perhaps it’s a case of Mr C’s family making more effort because they live far apart, and also the fact that my family are just not very sociable creatures and Mr C’s family are – very much so. This difference in attitude has made for some interesting times over the years. Coming from a family of people who aren’t really that bothered about spending time together and who prefer being alone and/or quiet lot of the time, it came as a bit of a culture shock to me to be thrust into the sociable, gregarious morass that is the Family C. Mr C’s family are all great people and I’m very fond of them, but I find there’s a limit to how much socialising I can do (with any group of people) before I start wanting to run away and hide somewhere.
Fortunately, I took some knitting with me, and there were so many people around that no one really minded (or noticed?) if I went off upstairs to do some more work on the booties I was making (for our new niece) so I was able to have some quiet time away from people most days, which helped me to be more sociable the rest of the time. Also, having a two-year-old nephew and a 3-month-old niece to look after and play with helped everyone to socialise and there was always something to talk about! Our new niece is extremely cute and our nephew is very clever (as far as I can tell with my limited experience of two-year-olds) but perhaps I’m biased.
Apart from playing with the children we went for a couple of walks and visited Wollaton Hall (see previous post), as well as looking at Mr C’s mum’s new house which is currently being made ready for her to move in to, and Mr C’s sister’s new house (from the outside) – it’s all change.
While we were in the village we saw a book exchange in an old phone box. I’d heard about these but hadn’t seen one before.
We went to Wollaton Hall last week and saw this beautiful stag grazing in the grounds. The rest of the herd were in another field, but he having a peaceful time by himself. We tried really carefully not to disturb him with our photo-taking, and he didn’t seem perturbed by it. I wish I’d had my proper camera with me, but the phone camera had to do…