It is so nice to be seeing some signs of spring.
For me the two best things about spring are being able to go outside without a coat (yep – I was always the child at school turning up in the freezingest weather dragging my very uncool anorak along the ground by its sleeve) and daffodils.
I have friends with beautiful gardens, and more horticultural expertise than I, and when we discuss favourite plants theirs are always those with a Latin name, usually recently featured on the front page of RHS Magazine and often favoured by celebrities and ostentatiously on display in the background of Zoom calls on BBC serious news footage.
I like daffodils.
Those ones with the huge gold trumpets that smell of my childhood.
I came from a family where flowers were very important but only in the ground where they belong. ‘Don’t pick the wildflowers’ was a mantra we lived by and I would watch from the side-lines as school friends made daisy chains. I dared not pick any daisies because that was banned and bad things would happen. Kittens would die and the sky would probably turn black before teatime which was not good.
As a grown up one of my cherished freedoms is the right to grow flowers in my garden and then pick’em and pop‘em in a vase on my bedside table.
Oooo the rebellion.
Last weekend in that lovely early sunshine I thought I would pick a few daffodils that had been growing recklessly and with abandon in the veg patch next to the remnants of last year’s leeks.
Scissors in hand and the vase filled (never fill your vase before your flowers are picked – let that be a lesson to you all….) I ventured out, fell over the gooseberry bush, stabbed my toe through the hole in my gardening shoes that the dog had eaten and bent down to cut the beautiful yellow heads that I had seen through the window.
Upon closer inspection the blooms were old and ragged and the leaves brown at the edges.
I hadn’t noticed this from afar.
Fine seen from a safe distance but up close, not really worthy of the bedside table.
I left them to do as nature does.
On Monday evening I watched a bit of an interview on television (judge me not, if I don’t watch then I don’t know what everyone’s talking about and what is influencing how people are feeling and how people are feeling is really important right now).
I came away thinking that, whatever the whys and wherefores, we can’t really see how something really is from a distance.
I took this thought to work with me and watched some stuff.
I stepped a bit closer and watched some more.
I learned some stuff.
This easing of restrictions is wonderful news for so many reasons and we welcome it with open arms.
From a distance freedom from all that has constrained us is a blessing and we welcome it.
But we have some broken blooms now that aren’t always visible and we must continue providing support for a while yet. Not everyone is ready for the lifting of lockdown.
We still have work to do.
Let’s take it gently into this new season and not tread on the flowers…..