#509 theoldmortuary ponders

View from the office today.

It’s dog grooming day, normally after getting chores done I return here for a coastal walk or a swim without doggy distractions but the view from the car tells you why I would rather catch-up on on ‘stuff’ on my phone.

Before we left I rescued the garden daffodils from the swirling winds and icy rain of the day

And rescued some figs from a fate of becoming over-ripe.

But the most Important task of the morning was to respond to a Government Consultation Document about the quality of sea water that we swim in at Firestone Bay. The bay has been used for swimming for more than a century but post-Covid the popularity of the area has hugely increased. If the area becomes a designated swimming area the water quality will be closely monitored during the official swimming season of mid-May to mid-September.

As regular readers know we swim year-round and none of our regular bobbers have ever become ill in the two years we have been bobbing. But becoming a Designated Swimming Zone will also ensure that our waterside environment remains safe and with adequate life saving equipment available. The link to the document is below if any bobbers are reading this. It only takes a few minutes to fill in.


Just to finish with a non-rainy picture my early morning dog walk took me past some peeling paint. There is even a ghost sign being revealed.

#492 theoldmortuary ponders

Here we are, past the middle of February by some way and I have not given daffodils the usual blog space that is normal for this time of year. This year I am not driving all over Cornwall arranging arty stuff so I don’t get the thrill of seeing wild and often unusual daffodils growing in the hedgerows where they were discarded during the second World War, when flower fields were changed to food production. Our house has had the easily available £1 daffodil bunches available in most supermarkets. Pretty enough to bring joy to the house but standard looking. Until this week. This week’s bunch took a while to open and were unusual in that they have a different shape, a bit like a cross between a daf and a tulip. Their outside petals form a cup and don’t open.

Extensive googling can’t find the name of these unusual daffodils. I wonder if they were picked in error for the bottom end of the daffodil bunch market. I am very happy to have them. Googling however took me somewhere a little sad. Supermarket Flowers is a song written by Ed Sheeren in 2017.

The actual words were unknown to me but really resonate with the moments when a family gathers to clear up after a mum has died.

I took the supermarket flowers from the windowsill
I threw the day old tea from the cup
Packed up the photo album Matthew had made
Memories of a life that’s been loved
Took the get well soon cards and stuffed animals
Poured the old ginger beer down the sink
Dad always told me, “Don’t you cry when you’re down”
But mum, there’s a tear every time that I blink

Oh I’m in pieces, it’s tearing me up, but I know
A heart that’s broke is a heart that’s been loved

So I’ll sing Hallelujah
You were an angel in the shape of my mum
When I fell down you’d be there holding me up
Spread your wings as you go
And when God takes you back we’ll say Hallelujah
You’re home

Fluffed the pillows, made the beds, stacked the chairs up
Folded your nightgowns neatly in a case
John says he’d drive then put his hand on my cheek
And wiped a tear from the side of my face

I hope that I see the world as you did ’cause I know
A life with love is a life that’s been lived

So I’ll sing Hallelujah
You were an angel in the shape of my mum
When I fell down you’d be there holding me up
Spread your wings as you go
And when God takes you back we’ll say Hallelujah
You’re home

Source: Musixmatch

Songwriters: Johnny Mcdaid / Edward Christopher Sheeran / Benjamin Joseph Levin

If the last Supermarket Flowers I ever received were daffodils, I would be a very happy woman. Even the boring ones bring such happiness.

A Daffodil Sunset. Over the daffodil fields of Cornwall.

#263 theoldmortuary ponders

Quite the red letter day in the yard today. Firstly the bees were going crazy for the poppies in the early morning sun.

Then a small under gardener arrived from Hong Kong via London and Sennen Cove. Never has the 10:15 from Penzance brought such a precious person.

She quickly set about the watering tasks. Then it was time to find the play park and walk the dogs.

Dog walking is a serious business when you are 3 years old. But for us all wildlife spotting became very serious when we spotted a Smooth Hound Shark at Freemans Wharf, not far from home. That is setting the bar very high for the rest of her visit. We will do our best, but I fear we may have peaked too soon!

#194 tholdmortuary ponders

A high tide and the sun at the right angle makes a pretty picture but not one that is particularly good for the marine environment. Earlier this week we started drinking Butterfly Pea Tea , it arrived from Hong Kong as part of a birthday package.The tea and the sea, in this location are similar colours

We discovered the tea on Lamma Island, part of the Hong Kong archipelago, after a very hot circular hike. Even a dip in the sea had not cooled us down enough to be normal rational humans. The iced blue tea we bought did the job just before we caught the ferry home. New to us then it was refreshing and had that distinctive taste that lingers at the back of every flavour of Jelly Bean. To bring out the flavour of the tea a little lime juice, or anything acidic does the job. It also changes the colour. Butterfly pea is also a natural food colouring. I might try painting a watercolour with it.

Careful what you google is the warning to the next part of this blog. Like all things botanical Butterfly Peas have a latin name, in this case not one that should be tripped off the tongue without complete accuracy.

Clitoria Ternatea.

Then there are the benefits of drinking the tea which is rich in anti-oxidents and flavenoids. My brain will be boosted and my stomach and intestines soothed. The growth of any worms in my gut will be retarded!!

On that happy note have a fabulous weekend, not something the worms in my gut will be having!

#137 theoldmortuary ponders.

©Debs Bobber

How does Spring taste to you?

Not a question normally asked, of course,but one that is very important to a canine friend of ours.

Ralph likes to lick flowers. Here he is savouring, the very expensive, flavour of Saffron, from the stigma of Crocus.

©Debs Bobber

Most of us know exactly what he is getting from the experience. But how many humans have ever tasted Daffodil, how many of us even bother to sniff them? Would it even be safe to lick, especially if taken to excess?

©Debs Bobber

Here is Ralph at his version of an all you can eat buffet.

©Debs Bobber

So many Bluebells, so little time, how is a man to choose?

©Debs Bobber

I’m fairly certain I am not going to go down the whole tasting thing with Ralph. Let me be honest, I know exactly what Other thing Ralph and my dogs do to flowers, but this Spring, after consideration of the location and risk analysis, I am going to sniff more Spring Flowers. What have I been missing?

Pandemic Pondering # 417

The May weather is so shocking in Cornwall this year that my poppies are ravaged. I can show their purple loveliness inside but their outsides are not photo worthy. The insides though are a velvety pleasure zone, too bad the weather that is battering them is also keeping the pollinators away.

In contrast the dreadful weather is not keeping us out of the sea and miraculously the storms have not stirred the sea bed too much so the minute the sun comes out everything looks pristine.

©Debs Bobber

The sea temperature has started to edge up a little so the rush to dry off and dress quickly after a swim is getting less desperate.We can even feel some warmth from the sun as we stand around enjoying our flasks of hot drinks.

©Debs Bobber

After some thought the Bobbers have decided to take their relationship to the next level. With temperatures rising slightly the need to dress like arctic explorers, post swim, is less essential. Water bottles have mostly been discarded already, along with wooly bobble hats and one layer of thermal underwear. Some time soon there will be a post swim photo of Bobbers posing in their new team hoodies, a ‘ Next Level’ sign, I’m sure, that ‘ bobbing’ is set to continue as the Pandemic restriction ease off and we could all be off doing different things. Two years ago this location was just somewhere to walk the dogs, a year ago, at the height of restrictions we dreamed of being able to get here to walk the dogs. Now after restrictions eased and exercise was a valid reason to travel short distances we swim here at least 3 times a week and mark special occasions with a dip. Something none of us would have considered until Covid-19 recalibrated our lives and mindsets.

Pandemic Pondering #285


Post New Years Day the festive season starts to get a bit tatty round the edges. @theoldmortuary there is a loose plan to take the Christmas Decorations down . This feeling is complicated by a slow dribble of delayed Christmas parcels arriving in the post and a general inertia to actually fire up 2021 and get it going.

This lovely chap arrived today and needs a moment or two to shine, or more accurately to be matte on the tree.

We still have a small food mountain to pack away either,in reality for ‘Fake Christmas’ date to be announced, or metaphorically for us to eat some time soon. Food Mountain or not we felt obliged to rescue a doughnut from our favourite bakery this morning ,on our regular week end dog walk.

What could possibly cause a doughnut to require rescuing, I hear you all thinking.

Loneliness is the answer. He was the only item left in the window. The queue was long and as each person entered the bakery different baked goods were gently tonged into brown paper bags. It would have been utterly heartless to leave him there with no friends to huddle up with. No Brownies to banter with or Eccles cakes to heckle.What he needed was a compassionate customer to order two flat whites and a solitary doughnut. The doughnut was not the only compassionate rescue of the day. A local supermarket had excess Gerberas at a very silly price so they too jumped into the shopping basket with the Doughnut rather than spend another lonely night in the reduced bucket.

The festive season may be fading fast but it is doing so beautifully.

Pandemic Pondering #203

We are not really flower growing people but the eccentricity of Dahlias has led us to attempt a little autumn colour. Last year we had an amazing show of audacious blooms. Despite proper care over winter this year has been not so good.

Pests are likely to be the cause of this year’s tatty blooms. One of the few bonuses of autumn is that as the temperature drops the pests decline. This week we have four good blooms.

I suspect dahlias inspire a certain nerdiness . Instagram search #dahlia has taken me to a world of gorgeousness. Back at home we are making the most of our four precious bugfree blooms.

In other less photogenic news our local library has opened for the first time in 7 months for browsing and borrowing. No books about Dahlias though. Shame