I may be biased but I think Devon is the most beautiful county in the country. I was born in Devon and 9 years ago I moved back when I met the lovely S. We’ve been settled in Lower Grenofen for 10 years this year and we got married here in 2012 which is how the whole wedding business began after people started encouraging us to share this lovely place.
I lived in London for 18 years so moving to the country was a big culture shock – ‘what do you mean the dry cleaning will be ready in 2 weeks? 2 WEEKS?!’
But Devon forces you to slow down and smell the primroses. I remember when I used to see a patch of primroses on a weekend away from London I was always thrilled. This month in the garden they are literally too numerous to count and I’m no less thrilled. I have to look harder for the teeny tiny wild violets but since I started clearing the stone hedges of brambles a few years ago they have been quick to move in and multiply. The violets are the favourite food of the rare High Brown fritillary butterfly which thrive in our woods, it’s one of the reasons the woods have been made a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI). So the violets are an important part of the fritillary’s conservation.
A local farmer uses one of our fields to graze sheep. Last week we had 4 new lambs – such a special sight at this time of year.
This week I walked in my office and saw out the window 2 Dartmoor ponies grazing my lawn. A quick pony herding required before S could leave for work. It reminded me of the our wedding morning here when a flock of sheep got into the garden. I was in my dressing gown and wellies herding them with S on our wedding morning, laughing til it hurt as I waved my arms like windmills and tried to be in 3 places all at once.
Now that spring has arrived I get up in the morning, put my boots on and with a cup of tea (and still in my dressing gown but don’t tell anyone) I walk with the dogs to inspect my seedlings, make sure they have enough water and put them outside if I think it’s going to be warm enough. Yesterday I saw the first tiny flowers on some of the cosmos – hooray!
I listen to the song birds in the garden, check the new leaves on the alder trees by the river, marvel at the great job the toad is doing protecting the new delphinium leaves from the slugs, have a quick look at the buds on the magnolias, deadhead a few camelias and make a note to myself to photograph the daffs so that I can remember where to plant more in the autumn.
All is well and back to the house for a day working on weddings.
It’s not a bad life…