Well it has been snowing, and blowing with a freezing north wind, but spring is on its way. Buds are budding, daffodils are blooming, and the visitors are returning to Hay. Having moved here last year, the garden we inherited was just a medium sized rectangle of grass. So over recent months a lot of work has been done, creating beds, levelling, making a pergola, and, my favourite part, a pond. Now it is planting time, very exciting. Hence the colourful picture of all those seed packets (in the excellent garden centre at Lyonshall). Gardens, plants, flowers and the accompanying birds can provide such delight.
On a day off last week we visited the lovely Brobury Gardens. It was bursting with Springy energy, and the daffs were lovely. From it you can see the church and rectory at Bredwardine. The famous diarist Kilvert spent his last days there, dying suddenly, tragically young. I read his diary recently and it paints a brilliantly vivid picture of life in the Borders in Victorian times. Well worth a read. And if you don’t have a copy there happen to be quite a few book shops in Hay… One of the things that comes through in Kilvert’s diary is what a fascinating, varied and beautiful area this is. His descriptions of the landscape are brilliant – economical, precise, poetic prose. Modern life has wrecked and ruined huge swathes of our natural world, covering it in concrete. But around here so much is unspoilt. Which is what it makes it so special.