Parched Earth

We are at the start of spring. New leaves are appearing on the Chinese Elm, the Silky Oaks are in bloom in their deep orange flowers. Some of the azaleas are struggling to open up, but others are already showing their marvellous flowers. The epiphites or stag horns are drying up. The grass is browning everywhere. The earth is crackling with deep slits showing signs of distress. Somehow the bougainvilleas do not seem to be that disturbed by a lack of rain.

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Parched Earth
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Flowering Bougainvilleas

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All water is being recycled to prop some of the most vulnerable plants. So, we recuperate all spent water in buckets to provide some sort of relief to them.  We put buckets under the  washing machine hose when it disgorges its water from the wash and rinse cycles. We use Eco- friendly detergent, so hopefully it should be fine.

The washing up water is also emptied in ugly and old buckets as well as the showers that we have,  all in big containers and we carry carefully our precious drop to the plants around the garden. Good exercises!

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Ugly old buckets

When we water the poor thirsty plants, we can observe that the earth at this time is so parched that the water runs straight off. So, little by little we empty the bucket and give it time to penetrate inside the ground. We have been doing it for the last 15 days.

It is lucky that we have 2 huge tanks and this allows us to irrigate our vegetable garden. The dam further down is also a God sent as it permits us to pump water if need be.

Not a drop of rain on the horizon at this stage. We should have a dance for rain in the garden.

On a different note, I remember scattering red hot chillis  around the compound in Malaysia to actually stop the rain. A folk tale imparted to me by the  then French Honorary Consul in Penang. It worked! Especially when the 14th July was celebrated at the Alliance Française.

Till next time!

A lazy afternoon.

Mid September in the Southern Hemisphere…the end of winter the beginning of spring. The winds at present are gentle. A soft breeze caresses my skin. The bamboos are swaying gracefully while the sun still warm is about to leave room for a more cooler evening.

The dogs are sprawling on the veranda seemingly out of it, but one can see the ears pricking up at the slightest sound or nonchalantly scanning the periphery.

One cat, the orange one called Minou blends nicely on the orange towel, or lazily winking on the sofa, but today I am glad he is out there on the bench.

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Hopefully he will terrify these horrible birds…. PeeWees.

The Pee Wee birds or mud larks are they are sometimes called and depending which state you happen to live in, are making a mess on the windows splattering them with mud. I absolutely loathe them. It keeps me having to clean them almost every week. And the car outside mirrors are equally filthy. We cover them with cloth. So, they have given up this game with the car for the time being, but they are taking their revenge on all the windows around the house. May be I should leave them to dirty the car…less to scrub.

It looks like some swallows are going to nest under the eaves. I can faintly hear their tweet and their graceful flight around the house chasing insects.

The cars are making their presence felt as their engines roar down the road. But they are not frequent and do not disturb the peaceful nature of the place.

Pigeons, crows, minahs, butcher birds are singing around the house. Calls sometimes are made to warn of a predator. At the moment a Bazza,  ( a type of hawk)  and his partner have taken lodging near the house. We see them frequently flying from tree to tree with a unique and distinctive cry. Other birds do not like it at all and make sure they gave it a good chase accompanied by shrieking cries.

The cows are patiently waiting for their 4 o’clock feed and they are slowly gathering and making their way next to the fence. Lucerne now is imperative. The grass is a little scarce at this time of the year and the bonus feed is devoured with gusto. No rain has fallen for a while and it is indeed a meager feed in the meadows at the moment for them.

The perfume of the white wisteria in bloom is spreading right through the veranda.

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Some weird insects are sprawling on a branch. Quite an amazing spectacle, but do not know what they are.

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The air is clear and fresh. The warmth is going slowly to disappear leaving us with another cold night. Stillness prevails. The atmosphere has a serene quality where everything is enveloped with beauty and calm.

This beauty and quietude cannot be put into words. It just is. As one sits here basking in the last warm rays of the sun, one can sense this.

The only music is the calm that the mind seeks desperately but unable to provide as it roams the labyrinths of its thoughts ceaselessly. Not music then but a lot of brouhaha. Always wanting to be at the forefront and trying to ignore the present.

One thought triggers the next one and on it goes. One thought hooks itself up and starts meandering….then another one starts. Seemingly with no connections to the previous one. It is like a merry go-round with its engine out of order.
Where does it stop? Maybe when all is over. Death you may want to call it but also the ceaseless and useless pursuit of trying to achieve peace. Peace is not an achievement but a state of being. A calm, a serenity, a joy.

If an incident of a disturbing nature were to occur during the week that had not been elucidated, talked about or just shared, one can observe the proliferation of justifications and how busy the mind gets to try to re-establish some sort of equilibrium. And what I mean by that is that he mind / thoughts redefine its original image of what it thinks it is. Nothing wrong with that you might say. Sure. But are we aware its movement?

We always try to redefine what we ought to be. Nice perspective of our self, nice image, good person, we shower our self with some kind thoughts. Again, normal. But there is a trap. We only look at the best side of what we think we are. Most of the time that is, forgetting that we  are the product of not only our nature, but also in the way we have accumulated ideas about ourselves throughout our existence.

Till next time