#392 theoldmortuary ponders

©Gails Bakery

Yesterday was my birthday. Under normal circumstances I don’t think birthdays always get a mention in my ponderings. This one gets a mention because it was quite unbirthday-like. After a week in London providing love and support to a new grandaughter, and attending the blogging course, my birthday was the day to travel home.

Not that the birthday was unmarked. Sunday evening there was a fabulous curry for supper boosted by savoury Bengali snacks from Brick Lane and a Connie the Caterpillar Cake.

Our drive to Devon was made birthday-special by visiting a Gails Bakery on our pre-drive dog walk. Gail’s is a large, London, chain of bakeries. Their cheese straws are my personal gold standard. Because it was my birthday I chose two baked goods to accompany me to Devon and a flat white, oat milk coffee. I picked, as my luxury item a brioche bun. Unknown to me it was not just any bun but a Christmas Bun!

Despite being a fairly loyal customer , I had never encountered a Christmas Bun before. Why do these things happen just as I leave London? To save me from myself would be the best answer.

The revelatory moment occurred as I drove on the A3 almost certainly beyond the last outpost of the Gails sphere of influence. Out into the world of Surrey and beyond.

No other incident in my life has made me inspired to make brioche buns before. Googling gives me the other ingredient I will need to learn to make – frangipane.

If I manage to crack this project there is one thing certain. These buns will not just be for Christmas.

The other end of the journey also had a surprise. We stopped on the edge of Dartmoor to collect something, the unusually warm November had allowed Lichen to thrive on Gabions that had been used instead of Traditional dry stone walling. I am normally very sniffy about such poor practice but who wouldn’t be charmed by these quilt- like patches of lichen.

Now this may seem an odd pairing for a blog but anyone who regularly drives long distances knows just how hard it is to get enough green into your diet on driving days. The same goes for blogs.

Advent#20

Nearly Home Trees- watercolour by Juliet Cornell

The Nearly Home Trees.

Cookworthy Knapp. 140 Beech trees, planted 120 years ago near Lifton on the border of Devon and Cornwall. Clearly seen from the A30. They have become a sign to many returners and travellers that they are ‘nearly home’ or ‘ nearly there’

This coming weekend will see the highest volume of road traffic, of the year, on the A30 and A38 . Those who travel on the A30 in daylight hours will see the familiar mound of trees on the hill and feel a whole kalaidoscope of emotions . Love being the most significant in all its nuances, textures and intensities.

Solitude #developing your eye

IMG_8356.JPGSometimes solitude sneaks up on you and sometimes many of us sneak off to find it. Time out from busy lives. This is a favourite spot in Cornwall and the solitude was fleeting but precious.

Temple is a word that the world recognises as a space for contemplation and quiet Solitude. Say that word in Cornwall currently and people’s reaction is somewhat different.

Temple is the site of life -changing roadworks on the A30. The delays caused at this particular Temple have hugely impacted on businesses and people, almost certainly causing  harm to those who are trapped for hours in their asphalt misery.

The picture above was taken after one such traffic experience. Whilst not exactly the silver lining of a cloud it is somewhat representational of the sentiment.