Alexander Averin

Friday, 20 July 2007

Moving, onwards and upwards

Dear Diary,

A bit of a newsy ramble.

I am a late riser this morning but the weather is not exactly inviting. Dark skies and heavy rain, not like July at all, more like early Winter. But I feel better; I’ve had a shower a good yoga session and my bowl of porridge. All’s right with the world now.

It is my youngest granddaughter’s sixth birthday today. Funny how the youngest in a family always seems like ‘the baby’ and the eldest seems more mature and quick to grow up. I am going to give E a few little things and some money for her birthday so she can spend it as she likes. I’ve also bought her Mandy’s Fairies, a lovely hardback book of poems about fairies, all written by a woman who sadly lost a daughter at a young age. She died from leukaemia and the book is sold in age of research into the disease. So if like me you still believe in fairies and love poems this book will suit you; do buy it as it is supporting such a good cause. (Contact details at the end of the blog).

Emmie believes in fairies, she has to! I have signposts in my garden:

Ssshhhh Garden Fairies Are Sleeping

This is in one of the flower beds as you come in the cottage through the back garden and at the front gate I have one a little more hard to see (except to fairies of course). It stands at the base of a pink scented climbing rose and an evergreen honeysuckle and says:

Fairies Welcome.

Being Irish I have to believe in the Little People (and I do).

If you approach the cottage through the field and cross the river bridge that M constructed from tree trunks and planks, there is a little sign that says:

Welcome to My Garden.

It hangs on one of the two willow trees M planted, one on each side of the river.

Near the cottage I have a pot of wildflowers with a sign:

Wild Flowers Grown by A Wild Woman

I was planning to take photos of these little fairy ’locations’ and post for you but the weather is atrocious. If the day ever brightens I will have a go.

E is having a party at a local adventure place, one of those indoor play places where children run wild. going on all sorts of things and then have a birthday tea. On a day like today it actually seems like a great idea.

Our neighbours are having a party tomorrow night, an outdoor one (!). Their oldest daughter is sixteen today. We are all watching the weather forecast rather nervously and with everything crossed. They have a small marquee type tent, a covered awning and plenty of trees to shelter under. There will no doubt be fireworks and a fire balloon set off into the sky. J has fireworks for any celebration and is a master of the fire balloon, I adore these especially, as they are truly magical. So I hope it’s a dry night. There will be home made and live music as well a light show. Guitars, flutes, a bodhran, a new set of drums too. M will take his harmonica. It is a shame that S, my son, will not be here as he would have enjoyed playing . He is off to the Isle of Wight today to stay with a girl he met last weekend at Guilfest (the music festival in Guildford). He must be keen on her to travel all that way! He has moved into a flat in a nearby town this week, the cottage seems quiet without him, I miss him and his music. He has lived away before so it is not the first time he has ‘left home’ but we mums never stop feeling sad when they go do we?

I will be coming back late to the party as I have to go to a works dinner at a nearby town. One of the librarians, the Children’s Services and Schools Library Service manager for Powys, is retiring after a lifetime’s career here. She has been a really dedicated library manager with her heart in the job. Although she was married she never had children of her own but really cared about the close-to-my-heart cause of encouraging children to read and planting the seed of enthusiasm for books. I will miss her.

My eldest granddaughter K finished at their village primary school yesterday and is off to High School in the nearby town in September, an exciting time for her. I can’t believe it, an oft-said cliché, but it is true. I really cannot believe she has reached that age so quickly. I can remember being eleven, lots of my main memories kick in at around that time.

There are fourteen children going up to the same High School from the primary school attached to the community library where I work. Lovely children all of them and I will miss them greatly, although hopefully most of them will continue to borrow books. Young people get a lot of flack but all the children and teenagers that I come across in the library are so polite and well mannered. They are a credit to the school staff, the town and of course their parents. It is a wonderful community.


Shopping Online. The net is a boon to we country folk, especially here in mid-Wales. There is a dearth of shops in this part of the world, a blessing in disguise really as I am not exactly tempted to spend money. But the Internet has been a saviour when we do need something as it saves hours of driving, petrol costs and parking fees and I can browse to my heart’s content on whatever takes my fancy. They offer fast, efficient deliveries in most cases. Which takes me on to another blessing that is.

The Post Office

A big cheer of support for this service which is wonderful and cheap. I am behind them in their fight for more money, their fight for survival really. It affects those of us here in Wales especially as we are not wanted by the private companies because we are ’uneconomic’; there are not enough of us, we are too isolated and live in inaccessible locations. I think the Post Office should raise their charges (you won’t hear me write that phrase very often!). The service you get from a first class stamp is amazing. I can post a letter at about 4 pm just near my cottage and it arrives in Essex (for example) the next morning.

It has been a good year for the roses, for all blossoms really but such a shame that the rain now is ruining them. I always pick a little posy of flowers for the library counter and they definitely cheer people, the children too always comment on them which is nice. The blooms always last for ages in the library as they do at home, always a good sign spiritually.

I went with V, my daughter, to an antique showroom in Trecastle near Brecon at the weekend. I bought a framed sampler of a cockerel and the rhyme ‘Early to Bed and Early to Rise…… I am going to put it on the bedroom wall (to encourage me to follow its advice?). I have actually been going to bed early for a few days and I do feel better for it I must say.

I went looking for book shelves but they didn’t have any. My study shelves had collapsed due to the weight of books and the weakness of the stone and hair walls. I also bought an antique wooden log box. It will be useful to store the dry kindling wood (or morning wood as they call it here in Wales) that I collect from the river bank in the summer. Did I really write that? Quite by chance the log box, being made of the same wood, oak, matches the antique commode that my TV stands on.

V and I and two of the girls had tea and cakes across the road from the antique showroom. K, the eldest, had gone off to Carmarthen on farming business with Dad. We sat and sunned ourselves, yes we did, it felt like summer then…. I enjoyed my own big pot of Earl Grey and the nicest carrot cake I have ever tasted.

The talk of Sun and the Rain today brings me on to rainbows. A lovely photo of one was posted in the Common Room. It reminds us that there is always sunshine after the rain and somewhere over a rainbow…… who knows what awaits? A pot of gold maybe?

This blog contains a lot about growing up, moving out, moving upward and moving onwards. Perhaps it is a sign that I must move on myself? Not upwards, I am not quite ready for heaven just yet. Who was it said we must try and make a heaven on this earth?


Life has loveliness to sell,
All beautiful and splendid things,
Blue waves whitened on a cliff,
Soaring fire that sways and sings,
And children's faces looking up
Holding wonder like a cup.
Life has loveliness to sell,
Music like a curve of gold,
Scent of pine trees in the rain,
Eyes that love you, arms that hold,
And for your spirit's still delight,
Holy thoughts that star the night.
Spend all you have for loveliness,
Buy it and never count the cost;
For one white singing hour of peace
Count many a year of strife well lost,
And for a breath of ecstasy
Give all you have been, or could be.

~Sara Teasdale

Bye for now,
Cait. .
Mrs M Bell
10, The Furrows Luton Beds Lu3 2LF
The price of each book is £5.99 +P&P
£1.65=£7.64 in total
Cheques payable to M Bell.


Anonymous said...

Oh yes, we believe in fairies here too. They have Amy's teeth.

It is a slightly nervous time this summer when so many people are having parties, bbq's etc and we just don't know what the weather is going to do. .

I so agree with your "Online Blessings". I live in the sticks and find it so convenient to shop via the internet, especially at Christmas time.

Love Crystal xx

Faith said...

So strange I was just looking at the Mandys Fairies website and then I thought i'd see if you'd blogged and you had.... and about Mandys Fairies, and your fairies, and other nice things! i MUST and will order a copy of this book. Thanks Cait x

mountainear said...

A lovely newsy blog Cait, snapshots of life.

I so agree about the Post Office too - I really hope that our local PO is not lost in the cuts. Can't image what our locals will do without it.

CAMILLA said...

Oh Cait, wonderful blog. So packed with all things beautiful. Thank you for the info on the book of Fairies. Lovely to have that picture, it looks like a handmade tapestry, I love those.

Entirely agree about Post-Offices, I would be lost without ours, and they are a vital part of the community, we must save them.


The Country Craft Angel said...

So many blessings that I share...especially the online shopping-a complete blessing living here and my health sometimes!!

And rainbows...they have a very special significance for me, which I didn't talk about in the Orange Man Blog. But I may some day...they are for me the most beautiful of all the whims of nature.

warmest wishes Cait


Posie Rosie said...

Oh I do love your site Cait, but couldn't hear the music, tthat is until I realised my speakers were turned down. Happy farmer likes a good barter, I absolutelyu depend on internet shopping, so loved the blessings. Porridge and yoga to start the day, a lady after my own heart.
My youngest writes to the fairies at the bottom of our garden, she lost a toth todday, so big excitement.

Posie Rosie said...

I have just caught up on your previous blog, it is lovely. I am just beginning to write, again, through blogging, I haven't done so for years, but loved writing in my school days. I am really enjoying the challenge, and as for the purple coo, what an inspiration everyone provides. I am no longer annoymous though, people visitng the island and the locals have started to find my blogs, I did prefer the freedom of being annoymous.

WesterWitch/Headmistress said...

I too have bought the book . . . two in fact - one as a present.

We haven't managed an outside meal yet let alone a BBQ.

Yes to on-line shoping - not tesco - they won't deliver here - too far into the country . . . .

Hope out PO stays open - it is needed and a lifeline to so many.

Suffolkmum said...

Fairies very welcome in my Suffolk cottage garden too. I love the sound of your 'wild woman' sign! So agree with your views on the post office - and internet shopping. I love the way you find blessings, even in this dreary summer! I too MUST order a copy of Mandy's fairies, sounds like my K would love it, I will get onto it straight away.

Pondside said...

We've always had fairies around our house. When Lillypad was small she told me that she went to Fairy School at night in her sleep. We have a book in which we write to one another - have done so for 10 years now, passing it back and forth - and we call it The Fairy Book.

Fennie said...

Oh yes the little people. Love the idea of signposts in the garden! Tailor of Gloucester where the 'little people' are mice is one of my favourite books. Thanks for the mandysfairies link - I'll look it up.

Re your last blog - my favourite writing place is bed, first thing in the morning, - with a propelling pencil in a notebook. I then type everything up afterwards.

annakarenin said...

It is a lovely book I bought it a while back when Jacko put up a post on the CCW site about it.

Great fan of on-line too it is hard to go shopping with 4 young boys, not something either they or I enjoy.

Very impressed with the couple of stories on M's blog and looking forward to some more.

laurie said...

i do like this post. i envy your bucolic life, though not the nonstop rain.

and i do love wildflowers grown by a wild woman. that bring such a great picture to mind.