Archives for the month of: May, 2012

Perfect weather; it’s about 25-ish.

Some of our trees are still in blossom, the one above is a so-called ‘summer’ apple. Not all the blossom is alike in colour and size.  This below is from a Bramley cooking-apple tree, the one the goats split in half last year:

whereas this is from a pear tree:

It’s not unlike the blossom on the crabapple bush near the house:

I’ve cut some of the grass, but I can’t bear to get rid of the forget-me-nots and dandylions, so I stopped. Anyway, I like the contrast between the short and long grass.

Elsewhere, butting was taking place for no particular reason I could think of.  Even with shorn coats the goats are staying in the shade most of the time.

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I’m not sure it’s possible to have this much fun if you aren’t a dog.  I love the front dog’s shadow, it shows she’s completely off the ground.  It hasn’t been taken at a funny angle, they really are going steeply downhill.

As usual on the seventeenth of May, we were awakened this morning at seven by a deafening twenty-one-gun military salute from the cannons outside our neighbour’s palace.

17 May is Norway’s national day.  It’s the biggest day of the year here, with flag waving, parades and barbeques similar to July 4th in the United States .  Our local parade of small children goes past the neighbour’s (the crown prince’s) front door (it’s the second photo, I can’t seem to link to it directly).  The children attend the primary school across the road, and when Alma was small we too had to show up at seven, wearing national dress or some other form of best clothes.

Some news people say it’s going to be even more enthusiastically celebrated this year;  it’s the first 17 May since the man shot the teenagers on Utøya, last July.  Norway has been preoccupied ever since with the significance of that incident.  There has been a thoughtful national debate – both about multiculturalism and how to deal with the culprit, as well as about human emotions like sorrow, anger, memorial, and so on.

Vesla has never expressed any interest in the seventeenth of May; it’s not her kind of thing.

Here is a better picture of the three philosophers on the windowsill:

 

 

Not from here, where flanking the house you can just about see the two cherry trees in bloom:

but a few minutes earlier it looked like this from the garden:

Everyone in Norway has their flags up today:

Except us.  We couldn’t decide which flag to fly, so we removed the pole that came with the house.  Anyway, today’s VE Day, 8 May, the anniversary of the end of the European part of WW2.  Only churches fly flags in England.  If a private house had a flagpole and flew the Union Jack today it would seem a bit peculiar.  If you waved the St. George’s cross, the red-and-white English flag, people would just think you were a right-wing extremist.  I’ve tried to design my own flag, but it’s not as easy as you’d think; every shape and colour already symbolises something that I’d just as soon not have on my flag.

Alma painted the Easter-egg heads that are sitting on the windowsill. It means your children are growing up when they’d rather paint Kant, Descartes and Nietzsche (l. – r.) than chicks and bunnies.

It’s May, and I’ve opened the windows.  They are locked tight during the winter and though it’s much warmer that way, we lose any connection with the outside –

where the birch trees near the house are now becoming greener by the day.

The windflowers are still thriving,

so are the daffodils,

and so is Tops.

Vesla had a haircut on Sunday.

It’s always a surprise to see how small she really is, like the front half of a pantomime horse.

I’m not the only one who thinks so.