I OFTEN BEGIN MY BLOGGING YEAR with a general lament at the fact it is January.
This year, however, the seasons are all mixed up. Our ‘early flowering’ daffodils were meant to flower Jan/Feb, admittedly earlier than many, but they were out before Christmas.
This addled my seasonal preferences no end. I didn’t know whether I was glad to see them or not. Usually seeing the new blooms herald the end of winter. But it doesn’t feel that winter has even started yet.
Close up those petals. Retreat.
You’re too early.
I watch them bloom regardless and fret over what will happen should winter strike at them unexpectedly. Dunnocks have been flirting with each other over the past few weeks. Too early!
I’ve realised in order to feel joy at spring flowers there needs to be a moment of bareness – a stopping before the starting.
And STOP PRESS – there is a crocus about to come out in the garden. A crocus. I think our garden has had about one frost. Yes, one. And the summer’s roses are still out. Next to the daffodils. They are admiring one another – gosh, I didn’t know you were that glamorous when I wasn’t looking!
I can only try to imagine the stress of those whose livelihoods depend on things growing in the right season.
And of course, the wildness of this not-quite-winter has had devastating effects on some places. Wind and rain and more wind and more rain. Brits are still startled by extremes; we have variable weather all the time (why else would we talk about it so much?) but there are lines that are crossed more frequently now, winds that howl mightily and have devastating effects. Oh, and storms have names now, to make them more personable. Cheers, Desmond.
Human decisions have made these effects worse. We don’t seem to understand that we need bogs and trees and floodplains. Not least to counteract the damage we’ve already done to our precious environment.
So all in all, my ‘oh dear it’s January’ post should, this year, be more along the lines of ‘oh dear, it’s not January’…
I don’t know what it is. The daffodils don’t, either.