wild flowers

May wildflowers

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I came home from Poland to a few days of lovely weather, which even saw me having breakfast in the garden one morning.  The clouds are back now but I just made it to the cliff tops at Seaham in time to catch a few wild orchids to add to Jude’s collection of Wildflowers.

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