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Tuesday, April 29, 2008


HHnB writes about her childhood memories of Bluebells, so I thought that I would give her a treat and publish a few photos just taken in the wood over the way from here.

Anne Bronte's poem on the subject seems particularly apposite:

"There is a silent eloquence
In every wild bluebell
That fills my softened heart with bliss
That words could never tell "

and is worth reading in full, H

Anne Bronte's sister Emily, also wrote a poem on the same subject, but I prefer Anne's.

Of course, the dog, Sabre, had to get in on the photoshoot. Some children had left a rope swing which he decided was worth playing with. He is 11 (77 in human years) but still thinks he can act like a kid (a bit like the bloke he lives with, I suppose!)

Thursday, April 17, 2008


(click on any image to enlarge)

A couple of streets away lives a feisty 87 year old lady, a widow who is fiercely independent but has come to know me, through my wife. She has had a interesting life - who would think to see this upright, beautifully dressed, silver haired woman that she was a Sergeant in the Woman's Royal Army Corps in World War II and commanded men manning an anti-aircraft battery which shot down a number of German bombers. On Remembrance Day each year she proudly wears her military beret with badge and her medals on her chest. (Aspects of this poem come to mind).

She sometimes asks me to do the odd "handyman job" which she cannot manage (she is proud of the large box of her late husband's tools - she always tells me she has the tools for the job!). She is an excellent cook and I usually get a "quid pro quo" in the form of cake. Her new fridge has arrived - the door was on the wrong side, so she asked if I could change it - job done.

Two days later my wife arrived home with a plastic box containing half a delicious jam sponge from her. I felt that the gift needed proper appreciation - the day was warm and springlike and a cycle ride beckoned. Cake and a flask of coffee were packed and off I pedalled to spend a leisurely couple of hours adrift amongst the lanes - the target being one of my favourite stops - St Rumwold's Church.

A convenient seat in the sun presents itself and I settle down to do the jam sponge justice.

(To enhance the meal the coffee was how I like it - laced with brandy!)

Sitting and musing in the sun I was kept company by my (very) old companion here - James Jordan, who sleeps beside my seat.

Let's have a look at his stone - it is written in archaic manner with the internal " s " written like an " f ". To save you enlarging the image it reads:
"Here lieth James Jordan
late of this Parifh, Yeoman
He died May ye 9th 1745
Aged 68 Years.
And alfo Seven Children
Four by Mary his firft Wife
One by Ann his second
And two by Elizabeth his Third"
A busy man who deserves his long, long rest!

But - where are my manners! I have brought you all the way down here and forced you to look on whilst I indulged - yet I have not shown you around the church. Let's go to the main door. Its woodwork was cut from Kentish oak trees 700 years ago

Regular readers of my blog will remember my love and affinity with wrought iron so it is a delight to put one's hand into the door's latch-ring

And so we enter this, probably the oldest church on Romney Marsh, dating back to Saxon times (c.800 AD). A tiny, scintillating gem of a building whether you have a religion or no.

You will notice the proliferation of candles - these are very necessary since the church has no electricity. This is a real delight at the yearly Christmas carol service with the holly and ivy glinting with the brasswork in the winking candlelight - the music being provided by a string ensemble in the ancient gallery at the back, as in times past.

Thanks for joining my serendipity - just look where opening a fridge door has led us! (shades of Narnia!)