Sunshine on Snowdrops
My mum showed me my first ever little clump of ‘drops of the snow’, just beyond a field-gate, high on a hill above our village, on a misty afternoon, near the mysterious River Dart in Devon.
I thought I’d died and gone to heaven – to see a flower that was just like those I’d seen drawn in the kind of fairy stories beloved of a little girl with a pony tail, feet mostly bare, and an oh-so-serious curiosity about the landscape around her.
I had recently come back to the UK after living in Bahrain for two years.. and after the golden air and sandy hues of the middle-east, I was stunned – it seemed as though even the air I breathed was a glorious, emerald green.
We now lived in Galmpton, in South Devon, near famously spectacular coastline – which I soon discovered was navigable by secret, green pathways – away from strict or prying eyes. I played at being a hobbit; long before I’d ever read of one.
Time seemed to stand still outdoors, a world away from everything and everyone else. It was my (and every other childs) private kingdom – filled with giant, medium sized, and miniature delights. I lay on my tum, by the garden wall, cat patiently waiting beside me, watching the insect world go by.
This led to drawing, and painting, and in the future, unimaginable back then – the love of photography that has endured even longer than love itself. Along with an insatiable enthusiasm for life, whatever form it takes.
Still, no matter how many lichens or mosses, how many buds or grasses, how many ants or centipedes, how many wrens or kingfishers, how many field-mice or badgers I saw..
Nothing can ever compare to those first few snowdrops, glimmering in a weak sun filtered through mist, on an empty hillside.
As unforgettable as my mum.