Monday, 29 September 2008

Trédaniel plan d'eau, afternoon

A single magenta rose clashing with the scarlet hips and yellowing leaves.

Someone has been kicking a puffball about.

A stand of maples going up in rare autumn flames.

Up the road, afternoon (Sunday)

Three jays with iridescent wings fly into the poplars, raucous as parrots and high on acorns.

Two young girls, blonde and brunette, with gamine smiles and bicycles, loiter somewhat mischievously.

Saturday, 27 September 2008

Up the road, afternoon.

Upturned on a corrugated shed roof, an old enamel casserole, transfer-patterned with coloured vegetables.

A scrumped apple, sweetish on the red side, but dry with unripeness, the green side sour.

Lancieux sur Mer, Friday 26th.

Before lunch, the beach to ourselves.

After, sand-sails, kite-boards, kite-surfers, windsurfers with see-through sails like lace-winged flies.

A reunion, egg sandwiches, beach walking, and what we want, and what we're getting.

Monday, 22 September 2008

The old railtrack, Gare de Moncontour, mid-morning

Returning along the track, we see Emily and Moos coming towards us. 'She looks about 17, ' says my sister, just before Moos plants paw prints all over her jacket front.

Up the road, morning.

At Quengo, there is one new foal, though both mares are there. She has an off-centre blaze, one pink nostril, one brown, and pricks her ears warily toward Molly.

Langueux les Greves, Saturday.

White egrets stalk among the salty greens of the estuary. We walk the length of the track, and come down at Cesson. Far off, the seashell sound of the sea.

Monday, 15 September 2008

Up the road, late afternoon

A perfect golden September day. Marcelle, in a butter yellow sweater, bends in the evening sunlight, picking up hazelnuts. Hers are the best ones hereabouts, as all the fieldmice know.

Sunday, 14 September 2008

Up the road, afternoon.

A clatter of wings, and nine partridges fly up and whirr across the stubble field, speckled brown and touched with red. Artificially introduced for shooting, happily some survive and breed.

Friday, 12 September 2008

Trédaniel plan d'eau, afternoon

There is just enough of the right kind of windless rain to make an ever-changing pattern of discrete rings over the smooth surface of the water. It looks very pretty.

Thursday, 11 September 2008

The old railtrack, Gare de Moncontour, afternoon

The leafy canopy of ivy-covered oaks and beech is still so thick, the day so gloomy, that walking into some stretches of the path is like walking into twilit evening.

Wednesday, 10 September 2008

Up the road, afternoon.

Princeling is complimented on his beauty by people we meet, distracting from Molly's drastic haircut. She negotiates the pushchair better than before; he is asleep when we get home.

Tuesday, 9 September 2008

Woods near Pledran, by Gillian's.

The cliché resemblance between dogs and owners is here uncomfortably apt: one is blonde, rangy, elegant, of elevated origins, wildly delightful, the other small, oddly proportioned, grey-muzzled and rather maladroit...

Sunday, 7 September 2008

Up the road, afternoon

I hear them ahead, and catch up with them in an overarching goat willow: half a dozen long-tailed tits flitting among the twigs, and a single blue tit keeping them company.

Saturday, 6 September 2008

Down the road, late afternoon.

The smart gold crew cut of the stubble field now looks dingy beige and muddy. As we return, there is smoke coming from Josette's chimney. I feel a little envious.

Friday, 5 September 2008

Down the road, late afternoon.

The wind has blown whole leafy chestnut branches down onto the road, the pale, spiny-cased, unripe nuts still on them. It is chill, and blows Molly's ears inside out.

Thursday, 4 September 2008

Water mill, Guettes-es-Lievres, morning.

The androgynous, slightly overweight, wary teenager I previously saw kayaking, whose slow, splashing paddling I envied, is today hunkered down among the weeds and grasses on the opposite bank, fishing.

Wednesday, 3 September 2008

Trédaniel plan d'eau, morning.

Picking rosehips for jelly gives me a thorn in my thumb and some nettle stings round my ankles, but also a pleasant, elusive waxiness of propolis on my fingertips.

Tuesday, 2 September 2008

Up the road, afternoon

A clean, rain-rinsed world; pet black sheep in a paddock with a green plastic dog's bowl, a patch of boiled-sweet coloured dahlias, red, yellow, orange and purple, beside them.

Monday, 1 September 2008

Water mill, Guettes-es-Lievres, afternoon.

After the vet and vaccination, a woods and water walk treat. We go as far as Le Vieux Bourg, where they are dismantling yesterday harvest fete, the church is locked.