It is now some three weeks since we arrived at our new home and we finally seem to be settling in although the introduction process of Max the Labrador to my four kitties is still a cause for concern. It will take patience and perseverance but at the moment it is a case of close doors and keep them apart. So Max stays in the kitchen and back garden and the cats are in the house. When Max sits with Bronwen in her room, we have to shut kitties in rooms, all very complicated and the possibility of a close encounter extremely likely. This week the kitchen door was not closed securely and sitting in our upstairs workroom I heard the tinkle of Max's collar and tags. Went to investigate and discovered him in the doorway of my bedroom regarding Leila and Merlin with great interest. They were sitting in the middle of my bed in the sunshine and both looked up and eyed the large brown face with some trepidation. Fortunately perhaps as I was not there to react, the encounter did not end in a free for all! Sasha has recovered from his trauma (as has my face and the severe bruising around my eye) but he has lost confidence and needs lots of love.
One thing I really miss is the wonderful selection of bread available in France. Mervyn used to walk down the road to the little boulangerie each day to buy a loaf of crusty bread and I am afraid that I have not discovered anything similar in England!
When cleaning up the French garden I found an old wooden bird feeder hidden in the brambles. I moved it to the garden and started feeding the birds with fat balls and seed, sadly they will miss this care especially with winter just around the corner. As I had a couple of fat balls left I tied these to a tree in my new garden. I have not seen many birds around this area with the exception of some very large pigeons and a pheasant. I was thrilled to see birds eating the fat balls and as we have no trees in the immediate garden, we went off to Pets at Home to buy a bird feeder stand, pictured below. This has met with great approval and we now have lots of birds visiting our garden, bush telegraph works well in the feathered world.
We have a wild area just outside our garden with huge old trees which seem to be a favourite spot for owls at night, they have such an eerie out of this world call. Then there are the foxes who roam around the area at night with their rather strange bark.
We have now discovered that there were plans submitted to build a number of houses on the vacant land around our house. Planning consent has been refused thank goodness and hopefully if the developers do lodge an appeal it will not be approved. They had planned to cut down all the trees which we would really miss, the open space is one of the reasons that we really loved this house.
Having had so much fun in France visiting flea markets, we decided to see what local boot markets had to offer. The first was rather disappointing but the second was quite vibrant. In France we found amazing vintage/antique items for very reasonable prices but newer items quite pricey. In England there are few vintage items for sale but generally prices on average are quite reasonable. Found some really pretty lined curtains for the lounge window for the princely sum of £2. No old lace or sewing items unfortunately but when scratching through some linen in an old case, found a piece of embroidered lawn. When I asked the price,the seller, who seemed to think my need to have a piece of old fabric quite odd, gave it to me for nothing. I also found a beautiful water colour picture of a dragonfly.
The two following pictures are of an amazing sunset this past week. Having got so used to the vibrant sunsets in Africa I did not expect to see anything like that here in England.
The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes. ~Marcel Proust