Water Feature In Situ

This morning I scanned the next half dozen of Charles Keeping’s illustrations to Charles Dickens’s ‘Martin Chuzzlewit’.

In ‘Even her weeping and her sobs were stifled by her clinging round him’ her dress flows like her tears.

Dickens’s description of the attendant, complete with whiskers, is faithfully depicted by Keeping in ‘Mrs Prig began to rasp his unhappy head with a hair-brush’

‘ ‘Pray, pray, release me, Mr Pecksniff’ ‘

The identifiable Mr Pecksniff, ‘Looking like the small end of a guillotined man, he listened’, as the artist runs with the writer’s image of the eavesdropper’s head above a pew.

In ‘ ‘He comes and sits alone with me’ ‘ Keeping demonstrates the unfortunate desperation of the couple skirting around engagement.

As hollow-cheeked as the writer describes the man, the artist captures him as ‘He sat down on the chest with his hat on’

This morning I transported the larger water feature from the patio to its permanent place in the Rose Garden, then photographed a few of our current blooms.

We still have a range of daffodils; numerous tulips; various wallflowers; forget-me-nots, primroses, lamium, wood anemones, honesty, and euphorbia.

This afternoon I watched the funeral service for the Duke of Edinburgh.

(Yvonne, you may skip the next paragraph.)

This evening we dined on Jackie’s most flavoursome liver, bacon, and onion casserole; creamy mashed potatoes; crunchy carrots and tender cabbage, with which she drank Hoegaarden and I drank more of the red blend.


  1. The illustration of the man upon the trunk is my favorite. I once had a trunk like that, until the day came when it was a choice between keeping the trunk or keeping my mother’s cedar chest, and the trunk went away.

  2. LOVE the water feature…and so happy to see it settled in it’s permanent place adding EVEN MORE beauty and joy to the garden! 🙂
    The illustration of her dress flowing like her tears…AW.
    The man sitting on the chest with his hat on is great! 🙂
    I have a VERY well seasoned trunk that belonged to one of my great-uncles. He traveled the world with it…gave it to my mom…and she gave it to me. 🙂 He lived to be 107! 🙂
    (((HUGS))) 🙂
    PS…Situ as in please sit u-self down and stay for awhile?! 😉 😀

      1. You’re welcome. I also meant to share…many of us around the world are mourning the death of Prince Philip and we are praying for Queen Elizabeth, their family, their friends, and the peoples who they have faithfully served.

  3. That is one impressive water feature! Condolences about the duke of Edinburgh. He lived a long, full life and certainly saw a lot of changes in his time.

  4. The illustrations by Charles Keeping are always entertaining! The garden looks warm and lovely, Derrick and Jackie. Soon it will be iris season. Have any other robins come forward yet this year to carry on Nugget’s tradition of accompanying Jackie in the garden?

  5. Nice bird bath. It looks like it’s was meant to be in your beautiful garden. The tulips are absolutely beautiful. I wish mine would bloom like that. Just once would be nice. I hope to see the recorded funeral service this afternoon. It was way to late for a live coverage last night. Enjoy your day, Derrick. 🙂

  6. Todays weather was such a blessing.
    And a beautiful day for the permanent installation of your lovely water feature. I am sure it will be much enjoyed by the birds.
    Your tulips are magnificent, Derrick – don’t tulips come in the most wonderful range of colours?!

      1. In past years, visiting Wisley at Tulip time with my mother has been a great treat for this time of the year… a riot of colours, all standing like soldiers!
        I’m sure the birds are having a wonderful water party today!

        1. Thanks very much, Emma. Jackie used to visit Wisley every year, too. We moved the smaller water feature to another corner of the patio. The one remaining collared dove had trouble finding it 🙂

  7. Thanks for the warning but of course I had to keep reading, just in case you were pulling my leg. You weren’t. I never learn. <3

    Those illustrations and the few glimpses of the text almost make me decide to spend far too many of my hours squinting at the tiny font in my collection of Dickens' novels.

    1. Thanks very much, Yvonne. You’ll see you have company in JoAnna. When I eventually get to the end of Martin Chuzzlewit and review it you will see that it is not my favourite.

  8. The purply tulips are my favorites! And from now on, when you tell Yvonne to skip something, I’m going to skip it , too.

  9. I remember when we were children the day when Dad killed a sheep for our meat supply was the day we had liver with bacon and mashed potato. And just down the road a short walk at the North Britain Hotel here in Ballarat they do a very nice ‘Lambs Fry and Bacon’ as a set meal with a glass of whatever is on tap.

  10. The water feature looks lovely in its permanent location and your purple tulips are spectacular, Derrick.
    In the first illustration, not only does the skirt flowlike tears, but also the broken line of her body emphasizes extreme distress. The ‘small end of guillotined man’ on top of the page is an ingenious touch, and so is Charity’s ‘encouraging’ her suitor by showing her ankles (quite inappropriate in Victorian England).

  11. The spring flowers in the garden are such a welcome treat for sore eyes.

    Joss and I also watched the funeral, it was lovely, very moving. And as always I thoroughly enjoyed the military bands.

    1. Thanks very much, Sue. The funeral service was certainly very moving, but such an ordeal for the family, especially for the tiny little figure swathed in black.

      1. Yes I agree. Seeing her enter the chapel and later with her head bowed in prayer brought more than a few tears to my eyes.

  12. I think that these are possibly the best illustrations you have shown us. It brought it all back to me with the picture and the words ” rasp his unhappy head with a hair-brush’”. It was exactly the phrase to describe my grey haired old mother’s attempts to get me ready to go to school. She always aimed at levels of neatness that I could only dream of.

  13. Your garden is a delight dear Derrick.. as is your water feature… loved more of those illustrations, so much detail in those minimal strokes of ink…. A delight all round <3

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