This weekend, as always, I set out on my long walks with the hound for company. We are blessed in this magnificent country to have an abundance of flora and even a brisk walk in the woods is something of a botanist's dream. Through open pasture and into woodland this weekend I came across the long-awaited signs that Spring is here to stay: flowering nettle still in the pale, tender leaf stage (good for making soup although I find it somewhat bland), forget-me-nots (I always think of my late father when I see these), borage (bring out the Pimm's) with its deep lilac flowers, daisies, buttercups, dandelions, plantain, the sulphuric-smelling hawthorn flowers. A family of blackbirds was foraging for nest-making materials and settled on pine needles (ouch! Will be a prickly bed for the babies!). A kestrel glided past and hovered more or less over the hound and I in completely still abeyance as he waited for his prey to move ever so slightly and then a perfectly timed dive and it would end for many a shrew or field mouse. Baby rabbits and their parents hopped along in full view of the hound who is somewhat blasé towards live food preferring instead the supermarket variety. What a delight to be amongst new beginnings! How glorious to see the blackbirds making plans for tomorrow. How spell-binding to watch the kestrel dance silently in the sky. Nature gives us the greatest gifts for free- the chance to forget our worries, our problems and all anxiety and just marvel instead. How magical to feel sunlight and happiness!
Dandelion seeded flower head. Photo copyright SvD.
As I walked along I came upon this sign. Nice to know that the saints still live among us.