Tuesday, 13 January 2009
Not much happening here at the moment. The crisp, frosty weather has gone taking my inspiration with it and leaving grey drizzle in its wake. I'm not so good at this side of winter and will need to work hard at not letting it get to me. Perhaps I should use my camera as a way of seeking the beauty in even the dullest of days? I have cheated a little by bringing in sprays of camellia and snowy white viburnum tinus to cheer the rooms.
Things are set for change here in the next few weeks and it is a change I feel most strange contemplating. My son, Sam, leaves for New Zealand for four months on Thursday and while it is the trip of a lifetime, I have never had him away home for more than a week. Lauren, eldest daughter, leaves for Belgium at the end of the month for five months. By the time I see her again it will be closer to six. Though I am used to Lauren taking herself of all around the world - she toured Europe for almost six months and went to Thailand for a month on a Gap Year scheme - I still feel the loss of her. We drove her back to her University digs in Clifton on Saturday, a three hour drive from Cornwall, and as we left I realised I wouldn't hug this precious child again for such a long time. She will be undertaking part of her course through the Erasmus scheme and will not know anyone when she arrives, just like when she flew alone to Thailand. Like her mum she seems to have a need to challenge herself, but it is her mum who will worry despite knowing she will be fine, more than fine. It will all be fine, just most odd and our Walton-esque family will have shrunk for the moment.
In the meantime, I feel the need for cooking and homemade carrot, celery and thyme soups, breads and cakes seem to proliferate; seeking comfort in food? Maybe, though doesn't such food feed the soul whatever the mood? The herbs in the garden have survived the frosts and the chives continue as though Spring were already here, and in some ways the contrast does make that so. So much milder, hence the rain which the gardener in me says we need...hmmm.
Sunday brought a day where Sam was treated to one of his favourite meals: lamb pasanda slow cooked till the meat melts away in the sauce of cream and almonds and the mildest of spices. As it gently cooked in the oven and the kitchen filled with the promise of things to come we played Tarot, the last time for Sam for a long while. He is getting thoughtful about his trip and the loss of his family albeit only temporarily. A first trip, a long way, and yet only the other end of a phone line thank heavens.
I bake more cakes and think and ideas for new designs finally begin to form, hazy at first, ephemeral, but there nonetheless, and for the first time since Christmas I begin to feel my head can return fully to the business. It is a relief. So much going on, so many impending partings. It is time for us all to get on with what faces us and that will be fine too. I'll raise a glass of our cider made with such fun in the autumn, delicious and flowery having survived the barrel being left in the cold of the garden, and drink to what lies ahead remembering all the while that time passes and they will return to play more cards, make more cider. The circle will be whole once more.
The sun has come out and I feel ready for it all.
Bye for now xx