The shop is sparkling now… looking so beautiful, dressed for Christmas. 

Thanks to all those who came for the Lambs Conduit Street Christmas Party on Thursday last week…. And for those that are able to make it this week, please put a date in your diary for Thursday this week, for the book signing event for Stephen Ellcock, Author of All Good Things: a Treasury of Images to Uplift the Spirits and Reawaken Wonder. Something we’ve decided at P&H towers that people need a lot of these days. 

It will be great fun, and we hope to see you there!

I’d been at a beautiful house in a beautiful village in Oxfordshire, on Friday, but it was all the better to slip down on the train into Dorset on Friday evening, at the end of another long week. Charlie and I went to the just opened Parlour Restaurant, at Bredy Farm, Burton Bradstock, that night. Really, really good. The cares of work and life drifted away. We rolled home, contended, and into bed.

Saturday was bright and breezy. Bridport Market provided a good haul, and home to the take the dogs around the top.

I love this time of year – all the leaves blown away now, by autumn storms; the countryside in tones of green, and grey and brown; but the structure of the landscape is made clear. I don’t think I could live in a country where it’s so cold in winter that the grass dies.  The green, and evergreen of ivy and pine, is what keeps the eye refreshed and the mind going. 

The line of silage in the valley, baled up for later months, looks ever more like a sculptural installation. 

Last night, we were at a village wedding. We danced the night away. A huge storm blew in overnight. The marquee started flooding and the rain poured down the valley.  Dramatic and beautiful, in its way.  Neither of us were feeling particularly sparkling this morning.  But I took the dogs around and a beautiful, pale, watery sunshine lit up the morning. 

Everyone going crazy, as always:

More rain came sweeping in; but as so often, it cleared and the house glowed golden with the long-slanting rays of 3 o clock winter sun.  Charlie’s nearly cleared everything, all put to bed for the winter; again, the structure reveals.

The dahlia beds are all dug up. 

Beautiful seed heads glowing on the lawn borders. 

And through the window, the tiny lights of the Christmas tree, as the sitting room glows golden pink in the light. 

Charlie’s put some geraniums at the head of the stair, which have been flowering like crazy. 

Soft shell pink….

A memory of spring and midsummer to come.

The days are so short now; strange to think that in 6 months’ time it will be high summer again. And of course, this week, of all weeks, we are focussing on the future, and what course it might take. My own personal plea, for what it’s worth, is that a friendly and civilised understanding – of all views, of how anyone decided to vote in the election on Thursday, might allow us to wake up on Friday – whatever the outcome – with a sense of understanding that the world will always come right in the end. I’m a great believer in good prevailing. it has done for thousands of years, and you can still see it on a daily basis, the world over. For every terrible screaming newspaper headline, we all know a thousand kindness, a thousand good stories, that will never be told or written.  And they are actually the stuff of life.

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