For my part, I travel not to go anywhere, but to go. I travel for travel's sake. The great affair is to move. ROBERT LOUIS STEVENSON

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

A Coleby Round

Each flower has its brief season. The pure-white blossom of the blackthorn has  given way to the creamy-white blossom of the hawthorn. The yellow mopheads of the dandelion have metamorphosed into delicate, fluffy seed 'clocks'. Speedwell, campion, cow parsley and hemlock have sprung up in the rough grass between path and hedgerow. Buttercups and daisies dot the grazing pastures.  

Spring came early this year. The warm weather and lack of rain hint that summer is a mere promise away. All the common deciduous trees are now in full leaf - the last to unfurl being the ash a week or so ago. Elderflowers are already emerging, and rosebay willowherb - a plant of deep mid-summer - is shooting vigorously upwards.

On the Viking Way the air is full of birds: swallows skim the meadows and invisible skylarks sing exuberantly above green cornfields. We spy a clump of common comfrey drooping their purple, bell-like flowers under a rather rare Swedish hornbeam. In Coleby we resist the siren call of the pub ...
     


... and take a path southwards just below the spring line of the limestone escarpment. This lumbering line of grave-faced cows is heading for a water trough ...
  

... while we head for the typical Lincoln Cliff village of Boothby Graffoe: all yellow-stone cottages, sleepy farmyards and shaded lanes. Wood pigeons clatter out of sycamores, and two green woodpeckers dig for ants in the short grass. A parallel path - now arrowing north - guides us back to Coleby between thick hawthorn hedges and an old filled-in limestone quarry, which is now a level field of impossibly yellow oil-seed rape ... 




Before completing the circle we crane our necks over the wall of this hidden house and garden. The bottom of the garden has been left in a natural state to encourage wildlife. It's a micro-forest of wild flowers, with scattered woodpiles and a reed-fringed, water-lily pond (just hidden in the picture) ...

3 comments:

am said...

Lovely walk. Love those cows walking in a line.

Anonymous said...

What a poetic account.

Alive said...

Anonymous is Alive, had some difficulty with Blog.