When I realised that we were likely to move from France to England in the Spring, I immediately became anxious – no – panic-stricken, at the thought that this year we might be too late to enjoy one of the glories of English life: daffodils. Of course, there are daffodils in France, and spectacularly so in hidden woodlands such as the one we visited last April.
But whilst the French have daffodils, they don’t do daffodils as we do here. All over England, they’re in pots in urban courtyards, crowded into suburban gardens, rambling over country gardens. They form part of the roadside verges on tiny D roads, march along urban by-passes and ring roads, line dual carriageways, and romp across traffic roundabouts. Householders buy them two and three bunches at a time and place jugs and vases full of them all over their homes.
I shouldn’t have worried. Since the moment we arrived, they’ve been at their spectacular best. It’s impossible to feel anything but joyful when passing by whole armies of those bright yellow flowers nodding cheerfully in the breeze.
And goodness knows, we’ve needed distracting from the tasks in hand. Since we arrived ten days ago, we’ve found a home to rent, started the daunting process of re-registering our car in the UK (you can’t buy a tax-disc without having an English MOT, you can’t get an English MOT without an English number plate, you can’t get an English number plate until….. you get the picture), organised moving our goods, registered ourselves hither and yon, started the process of catching up with British friends, tried to maintain contact with French friends…..
…and finally, of course, I’ve changed the title of the blog. The header, showing our transition from the Pyrenees to the Pennines, was master-minded by our friend, the talented amateur photographer Richard Bown. He already has a family history blog, but I really hope he’ll begin a photography blog soon and share some of his fantastic images with you. If he does, I’ll let you know. Because you will want to subscribe.
*William Wordsworth: ‘The Daffodils’