Monday, 16 April 2018

Counting Our Blessings

The other evening we took a half-hour walk through one of our favourite routes in the forest and olive groves behind the house. The photos below were taken very late in the day, which explains why the totally clear sky looks somewhat milky in places. But don't they show off just how fortunate we are to be living where we do?

I have to say that, as we did this walk, which included a hike up to the top of a crag that's got a 360º view from the top, we found ourselves expressing true gratitude for the wonderful natural environment that's just outside our front gate. We also got a superb view of a couple of deer just a couple of hundred metres from home on the way back. Sorry, I didn't get a shot of the deer this time, because the very limited zoom on my camera wouldn't have shown you much.

Nevertheless, Hope you like these, I love them!

In places the wild flowers are a carpet at the moment.

This is just a square foot of ground at my feet. If you study it, you'll see it's a riot of different flowering plants, so small you could easily miss them.

These thistles may look unfriendly, but they can grow to head-height and produce stunningly beautiful flowers.

Ooh, look. I believe I found a wood-nymph!

That's the crag that my 'wood-nymph' of a wife is sitting on top of in the photo above this one. This is taken from across the valley, but it's hard to get the perspective with a camera.

Green at this time of the year, or what? 

Almost at the top of the crag.

View from the crag out to sea.

As above, only from a standing position on the top-most rock. The terracotta tiled-roof you can see on the house on the ridge, that's our next-door neighbours' place. Ours is tucked into the hillside below and to the left of it.

Some aspects of the views on this walk shield one from seeing anything man-made. At such moments it's hard to imagine that not three km away there are tourist hotels.

I think the ruined "crofter's cottage" in the foreground adds immeasurably to this aspect. The winding lane is part of our circular route.

Who's THAT? How did HE get in shot?

Beginning the descent from the crag. The ruined cottage is again visible, centre right.

A zoomed shot giving a better view of the old 'croft' cottage.

And finally, as the sun's last rays show off our bottle brush as it approaches its very best showtime, This is, of course, my better half in the garden.
My sister-in-law's first husband's father was a nature-lover. He had a lovely bungalow in the Quantock Hills with a superb view of the Bristol Channel and he kept bees and made his own honey. His name was Don, and I found him a lovely man. He used to come to an Aegean island (often Samos) every April for a walking holiday. This was back in the days when I'd only ever been to Greece in the summer months. I could never quite grasp why he was so enthusiastic about these walking holidays.

Now, with Don having passed away, and hence my opportunity is lost, I'd love to tell him that I completely get it.


  1. Isobel Muirhead16 April 2018 at 07:44

    Thanks for these beautiful a lover of the area I particularly appreciate I have been hampered with arthritis, we have never ventured into the hinterland, only the strip between the main road and the sea.and we've never been there at this time of year. Now I know what I'm missing 🙄

  2. I think the bees probably made Don's honey John! But I guess he put it in the jars!