This post this morning https://throughthecolouredglass.wordpress.com/2020/10/30/a-suitable-boy/
on the acclaimed novel
prompted my thoughts to return to my own copy – a first edition from 1993. I concur with Vibha Lohani’ s assessment of the novel and suspect that her comparison of it with the TV series, although I haven’t watched it, is accurate.
Another earlier post of mine features “The Magnificent Seven”, a book about London’s Victorian landscaped cemeteries on which I collaborated with author John Turpin.
On yet another mournful monochrome morning it seemed incumbent on me to tackle my scanner problems. Following the highly technical advice of Sherry from port4u who suggested I should “unplug it’, I managed to achieve the correct settings for colour slides and was therefore able to begin a project featuring.
photographs which did not make it to the book. Rather fortuitously, these images were produced in November 2018.
This evening we dined on Jackie’s vegetable and egg packed savoury rice with a rack of pork ribs and prawns – some tempura and some spicy, with which she drank Hoegaarden and I drank more of the Corbieres.
On this determinedly dismal-dark, dank-drizzle day we visited Mum at Woodpeckers where she seemed cheerful and well; then returned home for lunch, after which I spent the afternoon reading a further 145 pages of Aldous Huxley’s “Eyeless in Gaza”, taking me somewhere short of half way.
For dinner this evening Jackie produced crisp skinned succulent duck breasts served with moist ratatouille; well cooked Yorkshire pudding; creamy mashed potatoes and swede; crunchy carrots, cauliflower, and green beans, with thick, meaty gravy. The Culinary Queen drank Hoegaarden and I drank a red Corbieres from 2017
We continued to Bisterne Close where again Jackie parked and I wandered.
It was the dead birch against the deep indigo sky that tempted me out of the car to photograph additional trees and shadows; bright beech leaves; and old gold bracken.
From her car the Assistant Photographer watched a squirrel, its head drilling rapidly as it gripped the snack it was enjoying.
On our return through Holmsley Passage I communed with ponies in the woodland where
the low sunlight piercing the shadows demonstrated the efficacy of the reflective collars some of these creatures wear to increase their night-time visibility. Notice which of these do not have them fitted. In this age of Covid 19 we rarely see an infant wearing a mask. So it appears to be with foals and collars.
This evening we dined on Jackie’s wholesome chicken and vegetable stoup, toast, and spicy pizza, with which she drank Hoegaarden and I finished the Trigales.
Early this morning we took a trip in the driving rain which was to continue well into the afternoon. The time span of these pictures was about one hour beginning with the first on Southampton Road just after 10 a.m.
Jackie parked beside Royden Lane so that I could photograph a tree and raindrops falling and spiralling in puddles on the tarmac.
Noticing how muddy it was, as we entered Lower Sandy Down Jackie opined that this might not be a good idea. Round the next bend we encountered a van which, in view of the activity alongside it, was not going anywhere soon and provided reinforcement of her speculation. She, perforce, backed up and performed a multiple point turn.
We turned into the Balmer Lawn carpark beside Highland Water for me to photograph more raindrops in more puddles and give my hair a thorough rinse after my earlier shampoo.
At first it was just me and the crows, but soon a family group wearing suitable gear and sharing umbrellas wandered in among the oak trees.
Out of the corner of my left eye I noticed what Jackie, from the car, had imagined was the family dog speeding to catch them up. My resident Expert on Rare Breeds identified this as a Middle White which was on the endangered list. Even though it was alone, I doubt that it was the last one on earth, or even mud.
“Look behind you,” I cried, thinking that the humans might be in danger, or at least would like to see a pig in a pool.
The animal occupied them for a while until they wandered off and it stopped
for a scratch on a post.
Beechwood Road to Bartley offered fine woodland views.
We have never seen such a forlorn group of damp donkeys as those attempting to shelter under dripping trees at the Cadham Lane corner of Cadnam Common. Autumn leaves even adhered to their hides.
A single pony sporting a leaf sticker on its flank blended well with the colours of the Common
where cattle on the road attempted to persuade us to stay a while.
This evening we dined on oven battered haddock and golden chips; green peas; Garner’s pickled onions and Tesco’s wallies, with which Jackie drank Hoegaarden and I drank Trigales Spanish red wine.
My post “Undine” (Illustrated by Arthur Rackham) contains the Encyclopaedia Britannica entry on the author Friedrich de La Motte Fouqué, whose
I finished reading last night. The author’s name appears on the spine, as does similar decoration, but as quite often in this golden age of book illustration the artist is given pride of place on this front board, still glowing after the 112 years since the publication of 1908.
The Durer engraving on the frontispiece is the work which inspired the author’s tale from the days of knightly gestes.
This somewhat Gothic romance can be read at the level of an adventure story of a young Knight’s search for himself or of the conflict between saintly Christianity and pagan passion personified by Sintram’s parted parents. The author’s descriptive poetic prose ensures an easy read. A. C. Farquharson’s fluid translation must have contributed to this. As usual I will not give details of the story.
Wikipedia describes “Edmund Joseph Sullivan (1869–1933), usually known as E. J. Sullivan, [w]as a British book illustrator who worked in a style which merged the British tradition of illustration from the 1860s with aspects of Art Nouveau.”
Here are scans of his exquisite traditional drawings for this book.
Nick Hayter, who is to start decorating for us next week, visited to check over details. This was necessary because he was due to begin in March before Covid-19 lockdown forced him to stop working for some time.
This afternoon, enticed by the clear blue light, Jackie photographed
the Weeping Birch;
and another cobaea scandens.
This evening Elizabeth joined us for dinner which consisted of Jackie’s perfect pork paprika; creamy potato and swede mash; roasted sweet potatoes; and crunchy carrots, followed by aromatic apple pie and cream. The Culinary Queen drank Hoegaarden while Elizabeth and I finished the Malbec.
On a day of sunshine and showers we each took our cameras into the garden during brief sunny spells.
Madame Alfred Carriere seems to think it is spring, despite sharing the Rose Garden entrance with hips from Summer Wine. Everlasting sweet peas are equally confused. These wear raindrop pearls
which glisten over the Gazebo Path and bejewel leaves of iris and New Zealand flax; seeds of agapanthus; fuchsia Garden News; and pansies topping the iron urn.
Another fuchsia which continues to thrive is Hawkshead; skeletal honesty plants display their seeds; Penny Lane still soars over the Gothic arch; Puerto Rico dahlia proliferates; and Amistad salvia continues to delight.
The mauve dahlia alongside the Dead End Path is even more prolific but has collapsed beneath the storm although it should recover.
This lime green Japanese maple does not usually produce such a range of autumn hues.
Jackie’s contribution to the garden photographs was her cobaea scandens hanging beside the greenhouse.
This afternoon we set off for the north of the forest and remained beside the
swollen Lin Brook which had burst its banks across the ford at the bottom of Hightown Lane and its junction with Gorley Road.
Vehicles had no option but to traverse the flood. From the road I photographed both a white van and a blue car in the process, while Jackie pictured the car from the window of hers.
The Assistant Photographer added her perspective on the water lapping the road; a splendid oak; a woman striding along the field in which I had photographed the horses; and a bonfire in a garden on the dry side of the road.
We passed landscapes with varying overhead skies, then Jackie
parked the Modus on the verge of Hightown Lane while I wandered over banks
of golden brown bracken, mossy roots and colourful autumn leaves streaked by the late afternoon sun.
This evening we dined on Jackie’s potent pork paprika; creamy mashed potatoes; and carrots and green beans al dente, followed by her splendidly aromatic apple pie and cream, with which she drank Hoegaarden and I drank Mendoza Malbec 2019.
I wasted the best part of a rainy afternoon wrestling with my scanner because I had planned to start a new series of slides and negatives, but it is so long since I worked on any of those that I managed to mess up the settings and couldn’t sort them out. I even downloaded a manual from the internet but couldn’t understand what to do with it. Children, grandchildren, great nieces and nephews – help me please.
My caring Chauffeuse, despite the increasing hammering of rain lashed by 50+ m.p.h. winds, dragged me out of my slough of despond by suggesting we went out for a drive.
We began on the eroded cliffs of Milford on Sea
along which I struggled against the gales.
Waves crashed against the rocks below and the Isle of Wight was barely visible to intrepid walkers.
Ripples blew across the car park; traffic control signs, and barriers to road works were flattened.
Continuing inland we listened to the mesmerising swish of windscreen wipers and the cacophony of clattering rain,
gazed on wet fields with neither sheltered livestock nor sensible wildlife in sight.
We were about to turn for home, but on such a day it seemed obligatory to investigate Waterditch Road. So we did.
As we traversed the ford over the stream that no doubt gave the road its name we felt grateful that we did not live in the house beside it.
British Summer Time does not end until 2 a.m. tomorrow morning, but, driving into headlights through Highcliffe soon after 5 p.m. one would never have known.
This evening we dined on toothsome baked gammon; crisp roast potatoes; succulent ratatouille; crunchy carrots; and tender runner beans with which the Culinary Queen drank Hoegaarden and I finished the Montpeyroux. Afterwards we enjoyed Jackie’s aromatic apple pie and cream.
Recent heavy rains have opened another leak in the roof of our kitchen extension.
Jackie made these photographs of the kitchen floor, then
of what we think is the faulty lead flashing.
While she was at the upstairs windows
she then produced aerial shots of the soggy garden, after which
during a lull in the rain I toured the paths in search of raindrops on fuchsia Delta’s Sarah, begonias, pelargoniums, rose campion, various roses, chrysanthemums, Edinburgh dahlia, Rosa Glauca hips, and fallen beech leaves.
For dinner this evening we finished Jackie’s choice chicken and leek pie with crisp roast potatoes; al dente carrots and cauliflower; tender cabbage, and most flavoursome gravy, with which she drank Hoegaarden and I drank more of the Montpeyroux.
The Golden Cockerel Press was an English fine press operating between 1920 and 1961. Its history and further information can be found in https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Golden_Cockerel_Press.
Tapster’s Tapestry is a little gem of satirical phantasy published in 1938 which I finished reading last night. These two illustrations are of the title page and the jacket, repeating one of the full page illustrations and made of stiff cartridge paper, still intact after 82 years.
Gwenda Morgan’s illustrations are good examples of her period.
As we left the house for a forest drive this afternoon we admired the tenacity of this strongly scented climbing rose clinging to life suspended by a stem broken by the recent storm Alex.
Today was unseasonably warm with sunshine and showers subject to fast moving clouds photographed at various autumnal locations including
and Forest Road
with its now replenished reflective pools.
Ponies enhanced the landscape on the road to Burley
where curly tailed piglets buried their snuffling, snorting, snouts in their frantic competitive foraging for acorns.
I am delighted to report that there was plenty of Jackie’s chicken and leek pie for another sitting served with crisp roast potatoes; crunchy carrots and cauliflower; tender cabbage, and meaty gravy. The Culinary Queen drank Hoegaarden and I drank Montpeyroux Recital 2018.