Friday, March 29, 2024

Letter from home

Wensleydale has been on my mind this week. I always associate Easter with going  to stay with my parents at their home in Aysgarth. Daffodils, hot cross buns, lambs, blackthorn blossom, sleet, wind, snow, sunshine, rain. I miss Ma and Pa, and I miss the dale. I haven’t been for a couple of years, because the sibs’ reunion was at my sister Jen’s in Winchester last year instead.

And my big sister Kath just texted (we text early from our beds, Kath and me) to say she is up there in Askrigg with 16 of her family. Lucky Kath.

Photo by Rosemary Mann

This is Kath and me on one of our sib trips…ten years ago, early morning, reading the news.

Down here in the bleak Peak we have daffodils, blackthorn blossom

lambs, and all the same weather, and Dave is treating me to breakfast at Hassop station before the Easter tourists arrive. Yum.

I think I finished three paintings yesterday. I say ‘I think’ because they have to sit around for a week or so while I consider them. 

This is one, and since I took the photo I have realised the gull is too low so I need to paint another one higher up. The painting was inspired by a photo I took in Cornwall.

This is another I finished. It’s of Miller’s Dale, below the Monsal Trail. 

The news on the painting front is that the Royal Academy did not choose either of my submissions for the summer exhibition. When I texted Het to tell her I wasn’t picked, she texted back “This year.” Bless her.

I have to admit that it wasn’t exactly a gut punch like it was when I got rejections for my writing. Maybe I’m inured to rejection now, or maybe it’s because my feelings for my paintings are different from my feelings for my writing. I think it might be because I feel like such a beginner with my painting and the summer exhibition was a long shot. And as Het says, there is always next year. Also, it means I don’t have to cart a painting all the way down to London on the train to deliver it for the second round of judging and then go and pick up again later, either after it failed the second round, or didn’t sell at the end of the exhibition. There are so many bright sides and I must learn to see them in every sphere of my life. Listen to me: Mrs Philosophical.

When Dave made the oatcakes and the bread last weekend he made me some hot cross buns as well, because I told him I miss having nice ones, as supermarket ones aren’t up to scratch. I hope you have a lovely weekend, despite the weather, and maybe some treats as well. My other treat is that Zoë and family are coming tomorrow. 

But let us all remember the people of Gaza, and give what we can to help.

Link to the UNICEF Gaza appeal: here


Anonymous said...

‘This year’ is the right response! Do have a wonderful Easter time with your daughter and her family.

Sue Hepworth said...

Thank you, Ana. You too!