Nature teaches that change is a constant.
I thought a mighty oak I named the “Castle Tree” would last beyond my death, but a storm sent it crashing to the ground last year. In nature you learn fast that the only reliable constant is change.
I am back, and confined indoors due to rain. A months worth of rain fell in 24 hours yesterday, it has been nonstop rain for over a day, and it continues. Even my outdoor cat Pebbles, who rarely comes inside, sits on the inside of the cat flap, depressed and curled up into a ball. I cannot remember a day like this, that has rained nonstop all day. The garden plants love it, you can near hear them drinking up the water from heaven; the snails and slugs also enjoy this new changing climate in Britain.
I have been here for nearly a cycle of a year, and it has been amazing to watch the changes of nature in my garden through an entire cycle. Before my eyes I see the land falling slowly into a sleep, the darkness closes in, the temperatures are falling. It seems winters in Colchester attracts rain rather than snow, but the temperatures are mostly above zero Celsius. The birds (apart from pigeons, magpies and corvids) all have abandoned my garden in favour of the autumn harvest in the countryside. I have not seen Amber our garden fox in weeks, neither by day or night. In nature you learn fast that nothing is permanent, everything changes.
Time is precious, how do you spend your time?
Perhaps the same blackbird I feed that devotes itself to feeding its young and partner, whilst defending its territory.
A car cuts up another car, the angry driver uses a finger to insult the other driver. Humanity, always rushing, angry and disconnected from everything. Humanity proceeding through life glued to their smartphones, whilst the music of their ipads drown out fellow people and nature.
Too busy to sample the treasures of nature, humanity instead buys artificial electronic sounds of birds singing and artificial woodland smells emanating from electronic perfume gadgets. I have no need for the artificiality, I slow down, watch, listen and smell nature around me. It rains, the relaxing beat of the raindrops, the fresh clean smell of water as it hits the dry thirsty ground. The birds sing, a bee hovers in a bush of flowers. I smell the flowers.
Even now as I write this post I and the cat Pebbles watches a pigeon drinking from the bird bath. I also interact with nature, this morning casting the last crumbled remains of digestive biscuits on the grass for the family of blackbirds, watching the male move backwards and forwards to feed their fledglings whilst the female has her own breakfast. I marvel at the starlings who seem to have telescopic vision in seeing small crumbs on the ground.
Today marked the anniversary of the death of someone, it is a year that has blinked by. Life passes through our fingers like sand, the angry car driver spends his precious time insulting others, I spend mine smelling flowers.