For the eighteen years that we have been fortunate enough to live in this heavenly little corner of the Tamar Valley, as you know by now I think, we have looked out from the bedroom windows across fields as far as the eye can see, and on down into Cornwall.
It is like looking at familiar exterior wallpaper, a living patchwork which conveniently and very attractively changes with the seasons, subtle little shifts that we rarely miss...perhaps a distant field will sport a different crop or a new herd of something, but in the fields around the house everything has always stayed the same.
Grass and even more grass.
The front field which you see in my window shot over here <<<<< has only ever been ploughed once that we can recall, and then quickly re-grassed. In the summer it is a lush sea of clover and usually grazed by very grateful cattle. It is heaven to walk through and this is my prime blackberry-picking territory, one circuit yielding twenty pounds of jam and five pounds of spiced bramble jelly last year.
But we knew things were about to change when the shoot that surrounds us came under new and bigger ownership recently. It would seem we might just be able to open the window and drag in a pheasant for dinner there will be so many of them.
Firstly the field was sprayed and whilst I optimistically hoped for something to keep it nice and green and the same, our own Gamekeeper knew different and warned us that this was the kiss of death for the grass and that we may be looking at cover crops soon ...curly kale or maize.
I mean who needs a veg box.
So, day by day we have watched our euthanased field die a very sad, slow and deliberate death...
and it was only going to be a matter of time before our wallpaper was stripped off.
I hung out of the bedroom window watching the birds swoop low behind the plough as it gouged its way through resistant earth that put up a bit of a fight, and my mind turned to pots of gold.
Eventually (and in the absence of pots of gold) I felt quite sad, and then wondered, in that impractical and sentimental way that often accompanies change we aren't quite prepeared for, about the days when that would have been man and horse. Then it was only a small hop to remembering Edward Thomas and As the Team's Head Brass, knowing as we do that the three sons of the farm all died in the Great War.
I sat among the boughs of the fallen elm
That strewed the angle of the fallow, and
Watched the plough narrowing a yellow square
The change feels so profound, the lost colours of that view and the character of the field so deeply embedded in my mind's eye (it is me after all who may spend the most time sitting up in bed nursing a cup of tea and just staring out) to the point where I almost feel I may need to make new curtains to match this new and rather bold decorative statement.
The new colour scheme is growing on us though, something mesmerising about those ploughed furrows and the way the light and shade move across them.
We await whatever may be coming next with interest.