Moving On

IMG_3639Despite the false alarm given by the weather app on my phone on the way back from Edinburgh on Monday (and quickly scotched by a text to Younger Daughter who still lives local to home) there has been no snow here yet, but temperatures stayed low both day and night at the beginning of the week with freezing fog for a couple of days.

Today still has a dampness about it but fog and mist cleared early and there has been a hint of brightness – but just a hint. The heavy frosts at the start of the week made their presence IMG_3640felt with barer trees and ankle height leaves in some places, most obvious under the magnolia. The few dahlias have blackened and have been lifted ready for winter storage, and the tithonia and zinnia have breathed their last. The cosmos shown in yesterday’s Wordless Wednesday are still sorrowfully standing, but I am hoping to be able to collect some seeds from them.

We certainly seem to have reached a transition point in the year as autumn moves on towards winter. It now seems more appropriate to trim and tidy in earnest, and finish jobs which could have been done earlier, like baskets at the front of the house and the 5 pots outside the kitchen window, all delayed because their current contents still looked acceptable. In view of the drop in temperature they have been emptied and refilled today, Narcissi ‘Rip Van Winkle’ and purple ‘Cool Wave’ pansies at the front and Tulip ‘Dior’ with pink pansies at the back, and all looking very bare for the time being. Now there is only a pack of mixed tulips to find a home for and all the bulb planting is completed.

moving.onThe seasons may be moving on as they do year in and year out, but we move on as well and while we were in Edinburgh I was fortunate to be able to revisit the flat I spent the first few years of my childhood in, moving on at the age of 10 all of (ahem) 51 years ago. I IMG_3635periodically think about the place and readily agreed to the suggestion of one of my siblings that we wrote to whoever now lived there and asked (albeit cheekily) if we might visit. I won’t go into the details but we could not have been any luckier and the existing owner could not have been any more inviting. She was happy for us to poke our noses into the rooms and cupboards, take photos, answer questions, etc – and I was able to access the ‘back green’ where my first gardening attempts took place – picking flowers from a neglected fuchsia and sucking their nectar, and planting a potato which was regularly dug up to see what it was doing. A small beginning indeed, but boy! have I moved on from there!

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25 Responses to Moving On

  1. Christina says:

    There is always that moment isn’t there, when it does all change, we are also forecast frost this weekend so it may be happening more or less at the same time. Ah! so we share something else other than a passion for gardening, we are the same age!

  2. Julie says:

    How lovely Cathy, to be able to take a trip back to your first house and childhood garden and to visit with your sibling. We’ve had a mixed bag of weather this week, a heavy frost to start, grim dank rainy and cold and now milder again. Sunshine due Saturday!

  3. I’m glad you did get snow Cathy, a nice nostalgic trip in Edinburgh, what a nice lady to let you poke around, the ankle deep leaves will protect the ground from the weather and your pots and baskets will soon be colourful again, Frances

  4. pbmgarden says:

    How wonderful you had the chance to revisit your early home. I love the image of you checking on the potato. My father took us children fishing only once–I remember lifting up the line constantly to see if the fish had taken the bait.

    • Cathy says:

      I don’t recall any ‘science’ teaching at that age so the potato was like a scientific experiment for me – can’t remember if planting it was my own idea or if my Mum suggested it. Had to smile about your fishing experience!

  5. Kris P says:

    Those visits to one’s past can be a mixed bag, can’t they? My parents moved into a house when I was 1 year old and my mother remained there until her death last year. Going back there for regular visits always left me feeling that I’d entered a time warp. Now, it’s odder still as I signed my rights to the house over to my brother, who lives there with his current girlfriend. As to be expected, they’ve made wholesale changes to the house and I find I’m dragging my feet about paying a visit.

    • Cathy says:

      That must be a strange experience for you Kris, knowing the house for virtually all your life – perhaps you need to be able to ‘let it go’ now. After all you have your memories regardless of what has been done to the house. You will always feel awkward visiting your brother while you are still emotionally attached to it – do you find it has affected your relationship with him?

  6. sueturner31 says:

    At least your memories weren’t dashed as can sometimes happen when you return to haunts… πŸ™‚

    • Cathy says:

      Although it is such a long time ago it was surprising how much we remembered about the layout – my elder sister and I collaborated on a sketch plan the day before and my mum put in her pennyworth but my younger sister was too young to remember anything.

  7. Annette says:

    Oh boy, you’ve really moved on since then! Trip down memory lane can be fun. How nice of the lady to be so welcoming. Leaves are falling rapidly with the gusty winds today but no frost yet and I hope it’ll stay away for a while yet as there are still so many flowers about. Funny to think we’re so close to xmas and it doesn’t feel like it at all. Oh boy, how time is flying πŸ˜‰

    • Cathy says:

      And she was French, Annette, just back from 6 weeks in France. Her in-laws bought it from my grandparents so it had been in the same family all that time and she was really pleased to meet us. Definitely doesn’t feel anything like Christmas here either πŸ˜‰

  8. AnnetteM says:

    How nice that you were able to visit your childhood home. How did it feel? I was able to do the same a couple of years ago. It was to a house in Havant, Hampshire that my father and grandfather had actually built together. My parents had moved after I left home so I was there from the age of 7 until 18. The wonderful thing was that the lady immediately wrote back to my letter absolutely delighted that we had been in touch. She had bought the house from my parents back around 1970 and remembered them well. The best thing was that she had made as few changes as possible to the house and was delighted to show us all the original features. It was a special experience. Thanks for reminding me about it.

    • Cathy says:

      I am so pleased you had an equally good experience, Annette. We came home one evening to find people outside our house here, just looking, and it turned out that the mother had used to live here up to the 70s. We invited them in as we were keen to hear her memories, but they didn’t stop long as it was getting dark – still hope they come back another time. Through the census we know who has lived here since 1841 up to 1911 so we would be intrigued to have more info about the later years

  9. Anna says:

    Oh that app looks fun Cathy! Despite the fact that we have not had a single flake of the white stuff yet winter does seem so much nearer now. Well done on all the bulb planting. I’m still behind you but slowly getting there. How wonderful that you were able to step back in time and wander through your childhood home. When I visit my Mum I often pass the house where I spent the first eighteen years of my life and wonder what it is like indoors and in the back garden. I shall have to take the bull by the horns one of these days!

    • Cathy says:

      It’s the basic weather app that came with a Samsung phone and is usually pretty accurate – it certainly updated pretty promptly and told me it was just cold and foggy instead! Oh do go and knock on that door, Anna – and hopefully they won’t say no πŸ˜‰

  10. hoehoegrow says:

    Gosh, Cathy it must have been much colder with you than it has been here with us . We have only had a couple of mild frosts here in the midlands. Mind you, we are still moving towards winter at the speed of an express train. Nearly time to toast our toes by the fire and look at seed catalogues !

    • Cathy says:

      Checked on your blog and see you are in Lincs, so not too far away (and we are in Lincoln next week!). We are at the point where Staffs/Warks/Derbys/Leic converge and sometimes seem to have our own microclimate – there were certainly a couple of nights of below freezing temps at the beginning of the week with freezing fog in the mornings but it is unseasonably mild now. I am hoping not to be tempted by any more seeds so will not be toasting my toes by the fire looking at seed catalogues!

  11. wellywoman says:

    Ha ha! That forecast must have been a bit of a surprise. Sounds like a lovely trip to Edinburgh and how fantastic to get to see where you grew up. I always think it’s odd how memories are triggered. I’ve just come back from a trip to see family and it’s funny how places you haven’t seen for years have lodged in the brain.

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