Tag Archives: Seasons
Looking To Spring
There’s snow on the ground and fog in the air.
Only a little snow, merely a dusting. Only a little fog, let’s call it mist.
I recently hoped aloud that 2023 would be better than 2022. Well, in the last couple of weeks I’ve been to the funeral of an ex-work colleague, lost a lad my wife and I have known since the 80’s, and spent the whole night in hospital at the bedside of my wife’s uncle before he passed away yesterday, his brother and nephew with him while I grabbed a couple of hours sleep.
We are not even out of January yet.
But City Jackdaw can’t only be a list of unfortunate and tragic events. We’d all need therapy.
We all need balance.
As the year goes on there’s other stuff going on. There’s plans to make. Projects to complete, projects to begin. Children to lead through this patchwork of emotions we call life.
Winter only lasts so long. There’s new light coming.
My Annus Horribillis, But On We Go
I’ve lost track how long I’ve been blogging here. Nine years? Maybe ten, wishing you guys a Happy New Year at this time, scattered as you are all over the globe.
2022 for me wasn’t a good one. In fact it was an awful one.
I lost a childhood friend in the first half and then there was a terrible end to the year when I lost a family friend and then my Mum. I won’t tempt fate by saying that 2023 will definitely be better, but I always go into a new year full of hope.
One thing this last year has underlined is that I have great family and friends. And that includes all of you Jackdaw followers, extended friends who take the time to comment, encourage and console.
Have a healthy 2023.
See you all on the flip side. Much love to you all 💙
Thought For The Day
Today, in the Northern hemisphere, it’s the shortest day of the year.
There’ll soon be a hosepipe ban.
End Of The Season
A friend took this photograph of the last leaf clinging to a tree near his place of work. He wrote of Autumn, still hanging desperately on at this …End Of The Season
End Of The Season
A friend took this photograph of the last leaf clinging to a tree near his place of work.
He wrote of Autumn, still hanging desperately on at this late hour, before finally conceding to the inevitable winter.
The symbolism is obvious, but to me it reminded me of another liminal point. My Mum, suffering from Alzheimer’s, is nearing the end. She is still hanging on despite a possible chest infection. A stab in the dark Hail Mary, she is receiving antibiotics to counter any such infection, with the hope of an improvement over the next 48 hours (I’m writing this on the Saturday).
If that doesn’t materialise then end of life care will begin.
To be honest, I kind of hope it isn’t a chest infection. What is the point of coming back from the brink for further struggle? A struggle she won’t even be aware that she’s in. A struggle she cannot win.
The irony is that for a while now my wife and I have been administering medication and calorie-providing drinks to prolong what she didn’t want prolonging. To keep her where she didn’t want to be. (Such is the nature of her illness that, even though she is still here, I speak of her wishes in the past tense.)
But it’s not for us to decide the hour. A ‘time for all seasons’ and all that. At least not until we react to her failing heart and begin the end of life care.
Maybe the leaf in the photograph can also stand for one final moment of clarity, glimpsed among the fog of confusion, where those clouded eyes show recognition, and the lips twitch in that old grounded humour.
But I fear that is wishful thinking. The leaf is hanging on but, despite those blue skies, there’s a cold breeze blowing now. The natural order cannot be defeated. One season is giving way to the next.
The strong wind came in as forecast. In my town centre, it was as if it had swept away most people along with the litter and leaves. Darkness fell at the same time as the storm.
Gloom and mood in tandem, the Autumn ‘fall’.
My house is on an estate at the top of a hill. The house on the hill. Sounds familiar. The hill hangs over this town centre. Half way up is a line of trees that have often served as refuge when caught in a sudden deluge. (And also a veritable bounty for kids filling their pockets with conkers.)
The rain followed faithfully the wind, but this time I didn’t need refuge. Modern man has a weather app, you know, and everything else at his nimble fingers. Sometimes I feel we’ve been robbed of the element of surprise, often exchanging wonder for knowledge. But if I really felt so strongly about it, I’d discard all oracles and take every day as it comes, wouldn’t I ?
Still, there is some wonder, even if, beneath this hooded, waterproof coat, there are no surprises:
I do love this time of year.
Falling Into Fifties
I’m long past that awkward, self-conscious stage.
I was never fashionable and so never had any street cred. But still, being around twelve or thirteen, I would steer my Mum away from the Oxfam window she was about to look in, lest any school friend should see us.
“Scav!” would be the gibe.
Thrift shops I think the Americans call them.
At what point do your scruples change?
Last week I got a pair of jeans for £3.50. I’ve also picked up a jacket for £7.00.
Is this my market now? Falling into my fifties.
It also seems appropriate that I’m mulling this over while passing through a late autumn afternoon, dappled fields lost to a host of daddy longlegs and spiders; ground conceded to the worms of the earth.
Sunday’s Spot The Union Jack Leaf
In honour of the approaching celebrations for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, today is spot the Union Jack leaf.