I'm sure I've told you before that we live about a mile along a very narrow single track Devon lane. Mostly barely the width of the car and with grass growing up the middle and Devon banks either side, it's very picturesque. Ours is the only house you come to about half-way along and anyone who visits says it is incredibly difficult to find, though we never have any trouble, but the lane is a little world of its very own and perfect for a short stroll if you don't want to do the grand circuit around.
I'll try and take you out there month by month this year.
Often muddy up to your ankles at the moment and washing a car a complete waste of time and tide. Cows and sheep are moved up and down from field to field regularly and what they strew offers a distinct aroma to what settles and heats up on the exhaust pipe of the car and only seems to become evident to me and the rest of the world when I park in the surgery car park.
So a few lane pictures for you, out through the gates and turn right.
I should really go out and take a better picture because now we have great swathes and drifts of wild daffodils in the hedges.Tiny delicate, pale yellow miniature ones, nothing cultivated,blousy or bright and garish about these and you ponder how on earth they got there and just how long they've been there?
I often wonder, did Georgiana Duchess of Bedford see them too on her famous carriage drives out of nearby Endsleigh in those first decades of the nineteenth century?
Now this twig may look boringly insignificant but I am reliably informed it is ash because it has those black bits on it. The hedge trimmer has spent the last few weeks doing its stuff which nowadays mostly resembles the maceration of a hedge rather than the careful trimming and layering that happened of old and probably helped make the hedge what it is today. But grumble me not because the by product of hedge massacre apart from neat hedgerows, is trillions of ash stalks, and ash has a very good use. It is the one wood that will burn on a fire instantly, in an emergency it doesn't require drying.
My emergency when lighting a fire is actually lighting a fire.
If I had to set the house alight I've proved I can do that within two minutes, when it comes to a woodburner I struggle and talk sweetly to reluctant kindling wood and vanishing screwed up newspapers (it's why we buy them) for hours. Well ash stalks offer an endless free supply of wonderful kindling wood so at the moment, as we approach home again...
...we are always laden with ash twigs to add to this.