p1040369.JPG

after the dry olive greens of Spain, driving through France was a shock to the eyes, the landscape smothered in frothing pale green. accompanied, as in England, by far too much of this yellow stuff; oilseed rape.

p1040373.JPG

there is more this year around my village, it seems; neither of the Bale farms grow it, but several whose land adjoins do. it used to give me sick headaches, but I have got used to it. it needs inordinate amounts of chemicals to grow successfully.

I am back just in time for the bluebells, and they are especially good this year. a mile away from my house is a tiny piece of woodland, full of a blue tidal wave hovering above ground level.

bluebells-small.jpg

the blue vibrates against the pale green of new beech leaves, and they have a lovely scent.

p1040381.JPG

photographs do not do this intense blue justice, sadly. another bluebell wood nearby, on the main road, has had most of its flowers stolen, only a small section remains. this happened a good few years ago, but they have not regenerated.

p1040370.JPG

cowparsley and pink campion are out in the hedgerows already, and the ground is very dry. it appears that there has been as little rain here as in Extremadura. and the rabbits are worse than usual, probably due to the fact that foxes are persecuted by gamekeepers, farmers, and people who like to go out at night and shoot for the fun of it. I wish they would shoot the rabbits instead of the foxes. I have not seen a fox for over a year.