I’ve noticed winter..

Walking every day for a couple of weeks seems to have put me back in touch with the seasons. I’ve been frozen for the last few days, the sun has been shining brightly but the wind has been blowing from the East. It actually made it good to wear a mask, it helped keep my face warm. Seeing the sun setting slightly later each day, when it gets past 5pm I really feel like we are heading back to Spring. Seeing a few snowdrops and crocuses about now. Soon it will be the turn of Daffodils. Hooray!

Cold chills

Something cold

Something blue

Strong winds

Cold showers

Gale force time

Leaves off the trees

Strewn on the ground

Kicking them round.

Run through the mounds

Of yellow and gold

Reds and russets

Spiralling down.

Crisp and clear

Frost on the way,

Sparkling blue skies

Or raining all day.

Overcast with clouds

Grey and misty

Fungi are found

Surrounded by mystery.

Soon will be winter

End of bright colour

Till spring

Comes again

In showers and bluster.

Roses

The roses have faded and are gone. Only memories stay with you. Perfume, thorns.

The autumn and fungi are here, rosehips are swelling, elderberries feed the birds. Clouds are gathering, nights are earlier, mornings later. Time for spooky evenings, pumpkins and spiders. Black cats and rats. Mists descend, people try and raise their spirits with bonfires and fireworks, lighting up the sky with flashes and whizzes. Now few entertainments will be allowed. Life continues, but a grey boredom faces us. Keep away, keep away, keep away, the bird Sings. Out of the darkness people laugh, hide, drink, get up to high jinks. Fools for a day or the season. As the year creeps on festivals are cancelled, subscriptions to TV channels you never watched before increase. Firms named after rain forests cash in. Work continues but strangely. And snacks to comfort us are eaten. Winter arrives in cold airs and frosts, the seasons turn. Will spring and rose buds ever return or will black spot spoil the days?

You know its coming…

In the northern hemisphere at least. We’ve hit the equinox, when the day and night lengths are the same. Cold, arrives, now. Unless we get some late summer heat. There’s been hailstorm in the North East of England and heavy rain in Scotland. Across the Northern hemisphere there have been hurricanes in North America and Typhoons in Asia.

The other side of the world is experiencing Spring. The South is getting warmer as the Earth starts to tip its south Pole towards the sun. The tilt of the Earth means that we have seasons. If the world was at 90° day and night would be equal across the whole world. 12 hours of light, 12 hours of dark. No glorious late evenings in summer or long dark nights in winter. What an interesting world we live on.

And it’s not flat!

Soon it will be autumn

The leaves will turn soon, green turning to golds and oranges, the wind blowing through the branches, stripping them until they are bare. Cold and frosty mornings crisping the leaf litter. So that eventually the skeletons of their veins are exposed. Children making prints from the leaves, painting them and pressing them down onto paper. Making them into patterns. Making them into wreaths and table decorations. Using gold and bronze spray paint to cover them. Adding a bit of Holly or Ivy and a red candle for Christmas cheer.

After autumn, Winter chills, usually wet now instead of snow. The branches bare until Spring arrives. Then buds, expanding into leaves again. Back to Summer, heat, flowers, scents, shimmering haze. Life.

Rain

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It’s been threatening rain all morning. It was raining earlier, the abandoned cat we look after appeared bedraggled at the back door so he came in for a pouch of cat food before going off again. He’s definitely an outside cat.

We were expecting rain all day. My hubby was going for a walk but that has been cancelled. So he’s in the shed making cozy places for the hedgehogs and the cat to sleep in.

Rain. One year, many years ago, we were suffering weeks of rain. I told someone that an ark was being built on the top of the hill. They believed me! This country (UK) has so many influences from the North, South, East and West that we can sometimes get all types of weather in one day. The rain is one thing, but we sometimes even get (very small) tornados. Also hail storms, water spouts, gale, storm and hurricane force winds. High temperatures (rarely) but highest last year it was 38°C. Low temperatures, probably worst in Scotland around minus 20°C.

So yes, rain, some of the UK is very wet, certain villages like Seathwaite in the Lake District get some of the highest rainfall. Some of it is extremely dry. The South East of England around London frequently gets less water from rain than it requires so water companies are allowed to extract water for public use from rivers and aquafers.

On the whole I like rain. Except for late one night when we came out of a club and missed the last bus home. We had a five mile walk in the heavy rain. The water ran down my ‘showerproof’ coat. My trousers got soaked, and then the rain started getting in through the coat seams. Oh joy! Even my shoes were sodden… Memories.

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Spring garden

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Various views of our spring Garden, top view is flowers, including Daffodils, Muscari Hyacinths, Primroses, Bleeding Hearts (Dicentra), Helibores, Pulmonaria, and Celandine. The bottom photo shows the Pear tree propped up with some wood, the weight of the pears pulled it over last year, Cyclamen in a pot, the path to the summerhouse, with some railway track and our back yard, waiting to be tidied up.

I did a bit of pruning today. I’ve had so little exercise these last few weeks that I felt very wobbly when I’d finished.

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Together

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I know when the nights are drawing in and it’s getting colder. The cats start sleeping on their cat tree in front of the radiator. They only like the platforms next to each other. Neither of them want to be ‘top cat’ and to sit on the highest platform. There is a bit of territorial rivalry though because one cat always sits on the left side and the other on the right.

I haven’t written much today. I’m not well, but this sight amused me this morning x.

Sunrise, Sunset.

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I’ve looked at maps all my life, but never noticed that it gets dark earlier in the South East in summer than in the North West. Of course I know the Earth is tipped at an angle, something like 22° and I know that at the equator day and night are about the same length and that sunrise and sunset are about 6pm. But I hadn’t noticed the angle that the terminator of day and night is at.

As we are on the Greenwich longitude line I assumed the shadow would run straight up and down the globe. But of course it can’t be if the Earth is tipped. That also explains why we have seasons in the North and South hemispheres.

Sunset

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The night draws in again

Sunset and its rosy glow is gone

Eight minutes before the sun set

Light travelling ultra fast,

Eight minutes to shine from sun to earth.

Energy in motion, then lost

Behind the hill

Night infects the light

It’s inky blackness sometimes reduced

By moon and stars

Or reflected light on clouds.

But the dark cannot hold as the earth turns.

Tipped slightly, seasons prevail North and south.

As spring arrives days grow longer

Now sunsets late or never

While equator stays the same

the North and South vary.

Sunset later every day till mid summer

Then decline.