Blackberries (or brambles) are ripening as I type.

And along the road from me are many of them, lining the footpath, next to quite a busy road.

And further down the main road, on a pathway between the allotments, are even more. But this isn’t a country lane but a town and people don’t go brambling in the town, do we!. It looks odd, and even , to some, bad manners or even thieving…oops! But I have been out twice this week, with a bowl inside a plastic bag inside my canvas shopping bag (so I can be relatively inconspicuous) and picked.

It’s quite tricky trying to pick berries without looking like you are doing it, as cars drive past and people walk by. I’ve even tried fiddling with my phone as a reason for my stopping mid walk. I feel like a private investigator trying to do my job without anyone guessing what I’m up to!

But today I met a fellow forager between the allotments. Whereas my container was secretly hidden, his was as bold as brass and positively brandished! He made no excuses, his transparent container held aloft as he picked, plucked and positioned in the box. He even commented to me as I walked past that he was picking blackberries…how dare he! If you are going to be a countryside forager that is fine thank you. A nice garden centre trug or wicker basket can display your findings proudly, but in the town oh no no no! Hide them please. Sneakily pick and hide them away. No one should see the fruits of your picking …although I will proudly announce to all and sundry where I got them once they have been turned into jam!

It’s odd how I feel…but I can be pretty sure that some time tomorrow I will be out again.

I wonder if there are any sloes nearby…?


Older than she once was

Once upon a time there was a teenager. She was insecure and worried about who she was and if she would get to where she wanted to be.

Then she began to grow up and one by one the simple but very real ambitions she had for herself were realised. Career begun, married, children, home, happiness. And now and again things ruffled her life. Death, heartache, wrong decisions, new decisions, empty nest and other natural life changing events. But she kept going and smiling.

The important people , who are still alive, are still there. The man she loves still loves her. New things to do and places to go. New people to meet and paths to walk. At 52 she feels that hopefully life is a little over half way and she feels healthy enough to grasp everything it reveals. No talk of ailments and sadnesses and “ageing” issues, but  talk about life and it’s events. Don’t regret anything unless it hurt someone you care about, then don’t rest until you have put it right.

It’s not about looking forward to the big events but relishing the daily delights and small pleasures that make each day a little bit special in it’s own way.