A walk for Christine

Christine and Stuart, happy on their holidays

Christine and Stuart, happy on their holidays

Like many of you, I felt like I had been punched in the stomach, reading Stuart’s brave post this morning.  His lovely wife, Christine, ended their 45 years together in his arms.  Tears are not far away but I need to write this post.  Losing a friend is terrible, but losing a partner, thankfully, is unimaginable till it happens to you.

I know that Christine would want us to celebrate her life, and I’m doing that in the only way I know how.  This morning I took a walk in our English countryside, with Christine looking over my shoulder.  So often she has done just that, here on my blog.  She loved the beauty of nature.

The sheep were indulging their usual antics

The sheep were indulging their usual antics

And against a garden wall, the sweetpeas were climbing

And against a garden wall, the sweet peas were climbing

Following the footpath out of the village

I followed the footpath out of the village

And down the lane, peering in the hedgerows

And down the lane, peering in the hedgerows

For beauties such as this

For little beauties such as this

And this

And this

And gossamer drifts, like these

And gossamer drifts, like these

The elderflowers have been prolific this year

The elder flowers have been prolific this year

There's a farmyard smell or two

There’s a farmyard smell or two

It's not all beauty when you look over the farmer's wall!

And it’s not always pretty when you look over the farmer’s wall

But there's beauty enough if you look for it

But there’s beauty enough if you look for it

And, like Christine, I always do

And, like Christine, I always do

The insects always seem to find it, too

The insects always seem to find it, too

It comes in all shapes and sizes

It comes in all shapes and sizes

And not always easy to capture

And is not always so easy to capture

However could I have imagined, when I woke up this morning, that I’d be writing this post?  Was it only Monday we last exchanged greetings and she left me a link to Glastonbury Tor?  I can only be thankful for her friendship, and regret that we missed each other by just a day on her recent holiday.  I’m so glad that she had that happy time.

Such a wealth of memories Stuart has to look back on.  I know him very little, and of his drawings, only through Christine.  But what a thoughtful and amazing partner to have said goodbye, on her behalf, as he did this morning.  My thoughts are with him and the family she so loved.  She was a warm and caring person, who touched my life and that of many others.  Whenever I take this English walk now, I know who I’ll be thinking of.

Just one last English rose, for Christine

Just one last English rose, for Christine




  1. Jo, not much I can say … more than you truly have given Christine the most beautiful farewell with this post. And my thought goes out to Stuart and the rest of the family.

    1. I did this walk back home again after t’ai chi this morning, Vivi 🙂 Sometimes I get a lift home but it was bright and breezy so I walked. 30-40 minutes though it took much longer last week when I was taking the photos. Sat in the garden, watching the washing blow, this afternoon. Hugs darlin! You’ll be home again. I was going to pop over tonight.

      1. I love washing on lines, especially as a photo subject … don’t see it very often those days. We have got a laundry room now set up and that is a blessing for the families with children. Our landlord has done a great job so far.
        Time to get ready for a summer dress …. and some strolling in the city. On a mission for one of my friends.

  2. A beautiful tribute Jo. So sad … I think I’m closer to some of my blogging buddies than my real flesh and blood friends perhaps because we share so much of ourselves on these pages.

    1. Yes, I think that can be the case, Rosie. Tragic for the family but a loss for all of us too. Thanks for your visit, hon. Hope you’re keeping well? 🙂

  3. I admire your kindness, Jo. This is a sweet walk post to celebrate a memory of her and to saying a goodbye to a dear friend. I am sure Christine was happy to read and enjoying beautiful photos during your walk…

  4. Hello,

    This is Stuart.

    One day I may be able to tell all about our last amazing day.
    I have just spoken with one of our beautiful yoga friends and blasted her with all the details. She said ‘That was a conscious death’.
    I can’t quite grasp that yet but maybe someday.

    The funeral is next Wednesday at 11 30 our time (at Broulee Chapel and Crematorium).
    I have got a plain casket that I am going to paint with red lotuses.

    Thank you her beloved blogging friends.
    Maybe there is some way we can include you.
    One of our clever sons will know.

    Toby (middle son) has researched how you can get access to the book which has the first 4 months of her blog in it. She spent a month redoing all the images and text. it is pretty special.
    It will appear either on her blog or facebook or both I think.

    Thank you so much for your thoughts, prayers, and heartfelt messages.
    It really really helps
    Love to you all


    1. Stuart- words fail me sometimes! As nobody knows better than you, she was a very special lady. Thank you so much for for not shutting us out. For sharing your grief, but also your joy in her life. It will be completely amazing to have something of Christine to hold onto. 🙂 I spent time on her blog last night but it feels so strange when you want to leave a comment, but know that there’s no Christine to answer you. We all loved her very much.

      Thank you for the details, Stuart. We will be with you in spirit.
      Hugs to you and the family. It must be so hard for them.

  5. What an amazing tribute – yes unimaginable until it happens and when it happens it’s still unimaginable – instead of focusing on what we lost so we have to focus on what we were lucky enough to experience – what values ​​these experiences brought us, this may not even death take from us again – but it’s damn hard easier said than done – to settle only to preserve memories as images in our memory, but good memories will never disappear.

    1. Bless you, Drake! Thanks for this. Such a shock it was, and Christine so full of life and tales of the holiday. I went back to her site last night and did some wandering with her in the streets of Seville and beyond. It’s just not the same, with no Christine to talk back to me.
      Take care of yourself 🙂

  6. wonderful tribute Jo – need a tissue please.

    and you truly have a heart of gold – and my sympathies go out to all who knew this wonderful woman. great honoring post <3<3<3

    1. Bless you, Lynn 🙂 Thank you! I just spotted your comment when I was trawling backwards this morning. My comments emails aren’t coming in so I have to use guesswork!!! Must make time to look at my settings today

  7. This is so sad Jo… I’m so sorry. My condolences for her family and friends.
    I do believe she is shining in a better place now, looking down to us. This is a beautiful tribute.

    1. Hi Paula 🙂 I didn’t know what to say to Stuart either.
      I was just in the Reader looking for you 🙂 I’ve spent a lot of time visiting all the commentors today. Do you know Chillbrook and Blue Brightly, Paula? They have some extraordinary photographs out today. I will come and see yours.

      1. It is tragic. I don’t know Blue Brightly. I have had one contact with Mr Chillbrook, and it was most shocking for me, so I won’t visit.

  8. Even though I didn’t personally know Christine it is still a shock.Condolences to her family. I love the pictures you have put here for her xxxx

    1. I mean to go to her blog and have a browse tonight, Diane. Her Seville photos were incredible! She really loved mosaics and all the tiles. I don’t know how long WP will keep the site open. Thanks, hon.

  9. I am so sorry too dear Johanna, my condolences to you and her family. May Christine rest in peace. Wonderful post for her. Thanks and Love, nia

    1. Yes, that’s very true, Ineke. I have been astounded at all the comments from her many friends, and others besides. I’m trawling their blogs now, looking at happier times. 🙂

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