Winter Whimsy

IMG_20141127_142519 IMG_20141127_141229 IMG_20141127_135122There comes a point each year, about the middle to end of November (depending on the weather), when the endless wet mud, lack of life in the form of fewer flowers or crops to pick, the lack of light and heavy, cold, damp skies get too much. The field and tunnels have slowed right down production-wise, and not only are the crops barely growing, there’s not much of anything to pick, or much variety. So about now is the time when my soul rebels, and fights against the seasonal depression and determines to create some interest in other ways. Last week it was building a pond extension to benefit wildlife; today it was making blackboard signs for the polytunnels. The boards are actually lovely reclaimed floorboards, scavenged from the carpenters’ nearby fire pile, and painted with blackboard paint. Now nearly all the tunnels how their very own board, with their name on top; and the idea is I will list what’s currently growing in them on each board. So anyone taking a stroll around can have a nose and see what’s going on – everyone is welcome to take a look after all. It might help me remember what’s coming up next too, if I forget to keep to my planned out rotations. Plus it makes it look like everything is actually planned here (pretending there is a master plan is always a good idea).

Morale needs such solid structural whimsies to hang on to, as the tail end of the year approaches; once the days get longer again, and we can plan for the new season, all will be excitement and action again (in theory). So now is the time to work on pretty frivolous projects to a) get you through that day, and b) bring a smile to the face when you see them again, and imagine how other people or animals/wildlife will enjoy them too, whether it’s next week or next year. I’m also thinking of starting a Put-your-face-on-a-scarecrow idea: using printed out & laminated photos on wooden cut-out figures, to dot around the field and put off the pigeons (a bit like Fred’s genius cut-out farmers at Duchy Home Farm in Tetbury). Maybe it would make a good Kickstarter or BuzzBnk crowd-funding pitch – pay £20 and put Aunt Mabel’s face on her own personalised scarecrow as a Christmas present. Hmm, one to mull over with a cuppa in the warm…


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