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China Girl blog 11th April 2018

In my home there is a sense of peacefulness and freedom, even in the grey days, waiting for the sun to warm the cold earth. Ma read that people without a sense of possession miss one of the great pleasures of life. Our pleasures are the objects collected over many years which adorn our home and garden, all adding to the atmosphere of the ancient building. The wistfulness of the past lingers in the air, as those who lived here before us watch and listen.

Hardly a soul about this week, no wonder when it is so cold and dreary. However, Ma’s afternoon was made by a visitor who came upon Ma on her knees weeding, asking if the house was lived in and if so, what were the owners like? She then said “have you gardened here for long and where do you live?” Ma replied “I live here and I have gardened here for nearly 30 years”. “Really?” replied the woman, “which room do they let you have? I hope you are well paid!”

Gone is the machinery which has mostly improved the farm track, especially around the barn. Over the past three decades, huge piles of rubble consisting of stone and old cement block have built up; where it came from Ma is at a loss to remember. At all events, eighty tonnes were buried and used to build up a dip in a field, then covered with earth which when the weather warms, will be sown with grass seed.

In the Oxbow the exotic Lysichiton, known as Skunk cabbage, a genus of two species from eastern Asia and western North America are flowering. Their large yellow flowers appear before their handsome shiny leaves. They are a robust marsh plant, seeding about easily.

The pallet of garden goods arrived for our new Curiosity Shop. It took us all day to price and arrange the tiny shop, together with all of the porcelain, small antique objects and Indian hangings, all of which have made our new venture look like Aladdin’s Cave!

A brave visitor in the rain said “we will know when proper spring is here, when the bluebells flower”