Friday, 19 July 2013

Long Hot Summer

The heatwave continues, thank goodness!  The children break up from school today for the summer holidays and hopefully this fabulous weather will be kind to them and carry on for the next six weeks at least.  For the most part people are smiling and are more inclined to stop and chat for a few minutes, even if just to say how hot it is!  Most of the fields have been cut and hay made, sheep have been sheared and lambs weaned off their exhausted mothers.  The countryside dozes under a blazing sun.

At this time of year, with the schools about to finish and the sun out every day, it is easy to feel we are on a permanent holiday.  I am really getting into the swing of it now and only a tiny bit of guilt remains at my lack of motivation to achieve anything other than having a line full of clean washing and food in the fridge.  My love of crafts and creating in general has deserted me completely.  I have no desire to do anything other than write, take photos and day dream.  If day dreaming were a career choice, I'd be at the top of my game.  Sadly it isn't.  Never mind, I will carry on anyway.

Pea and I spent a few hours yesterday baking cakes with which to fill the tins ready for the weekend.  We made chocolate biscuits, sticky chocolate cornflake cake, white chocolate muffins in pastry cases and to break up the heavy chocolate theme, lemon cupcakes.  They are really fresh and tangy, which is lovely on a hot day and we will be taking some to the beach this evening to have with our tea.  So there is not much else to do now; all the bedding has been washed and is blowing in the sea breeze in the garden; there are cakes and biscuits aplenty in the kitchen; chicken has been bought from the butcher and cooked ready to eat on the beach and boring jobs and annoying phone calls have been made.  I am free to do nothing.

Pea has of course, earned her right to do nothing, but I have not.  It is a disgrace for a grown woman to drift about with her head in the clouds, watching swallows swoop over the fields, stirring only to let a trapped bee out of the window.  Occasionally I wander into the garden to soak up the sun and read a chapter of my book, The Tenant of Wildfell Hall and wander back in again for a cup of tea or to fill the dogs' water bowl.  But I have plans for September.  Things to do to give me a purpose in life and to justify my existence a little.  My children still need me here, but not in the way they did when they were very small.  I do not grovel on the floor for hours on end doing giant zoo jigsaws, or read the same baby board book over and over or carry them about on my hip whilst trying to make myself something to eat.  I have done all this and loved every agonising, exhausting second of it.  Now it is becoming clear that I need to carve out a life where, if I am not exactly the centre of it, then nearer to it than I have been for many years.  It is a daunting thought.  I have put my family first since the moment I knew Pea was a microscopic life growing inside me, and I have done it willingly and lovingly.  But the time is coming where they are moving away from me a tiny bit each day and I must say I am happy and proud to have got them this far.  H2 will need me for a while longer yet, but he told me this morning what the letters DNA stand for, drew a diagram of the double helix and then worried if the electrons were indeed outside the nucleus.  By the way, DNA stands for Deoxyribonucleic Acid, just in case you were wondering.  Pea taught him that and he has taught several of the children at school.  See?  I am surplus to requirements.

I find this time of year quite romantic.  Actually, if I'm honest I find lots of things quite romantic, usually mundane every day things, viewed in a different light.  Summer dresses, meadows, washing blowing in the breeze, old fashioned scented roses, a pile of old books, the way the sun slants through the windows late in the evening and lights a patch of wall turning it the colour of ripe corn, and abandoned farm houses and cottages in the late summer sun, silent and waiting, remembering their happier days.

I am no authority on romantic love but these things make me feel as if I were in love, so they will have to do for now.  I am hardly likely to meet the man of my dreams whilst I'm wandering around these lonely lanes.  If I did he would have to be seriously special for me to bother with; he would have to be tall, dark and handsome for a start and have a deep love for the countryside, old cottages and books.  He would have to be kind and thoughtful to flora and fauna and love this island as much as I do and he would have to put up with my day dreaming.  In return I would give him unwavering love and devotion for ever more.

Jane Austen has a lot to answer for.

I hope you find some romance in your day.  Thank you for reading. xxx

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