As we go into December 2020, I am looking back over this strange and challenging year of the Covid 19 pandemic.
I spent the first long lockdown with mum in Taunton. Each day on my permitted short walk around the fields near mums house I asked for a treasure! I wanted to find something wonderful, like a Blue Jays feather, to lift my spirits. I didn’t find a feather but I did find an abandoned old dolls house languishing in a semi derelict farm building. I managed to get it, thanks to the security guy who looked after the premises! That kept me busy working on restoring it. As the spring wore on and we were not allowed to go out I was thinking I would miss sketching the bluebells this year. Imagine my delight when we were allowed to drive out somewhere to exercise and I took myself to Cothelstone Hill, on the Quantocks, and walked up to the top and saw the 360 degree view, such a literal breath of fresh air after being indoors so much, and even though it was the middle of May…BLUEBELLS! Still there, carpeting the ground everywhere I looked! Little tiny ones on the moorland part of the hill, getting taller and denser further down the slopes, into the woods. So beautiful! I did a couple of pen and watercolour sketches.
One of the things I have been missing the most because of the pandemic is seeing and hugging my friends and other members of my family, apart from mum! In the summer, it was lovely to spend a couple of days in Ely, catching up with my ‘bubble’ sister. I was going home that morning but decided to walk down to the river and see if I could sketch something, before I left. The sun was beating down, and as I went along the river bank my feet didn’t seem to want to stop, so I carried on until I was as far as I could go before turning away from the river and going up towards the parkland that runs alongside the cathedral. Longing to rest I left the path and walked onto the grass towards a patch of shade under an old tree.
As I turned to sit down I noticed a tiny feather by my shoe, a dull greyish colour. Something about it made me pick it up and turn it over. Yes! treasure indeed, a dazzling Blue Jay’s feather!