You'll have to excuse this post. I'm writing it from my phone, having recently installed the Blogger app on my phone. As a touch typist, it's utterly annoying, but The Hubster is playing Zynga Poker on the laptop and I'm reduced to using the phone, on the sofa, while snuggling under a blanket and watching the last ever two episodes of Charmed. (Cheesy, but I DON'T CARE, and anyway I missed these episodes years ago!)
The Hubster took a couple of days off from work so we could venture a little further afield for a trip out. We started off at the park, playing hide and seek with Witchlet One. He always cheats - he can't stick to one spot and always moves, and when you do find him, there's always a reason why it "doesn't count"! The park is next to the cemetery, so I lifted Witchlet Two over the wall and we had a wander. The first thing we noticed was a brand new memorial stone at the back of cemetery. This was near the untended grave that Papa led me to eighteen months ago. It's a memorial for four generations of a family, and it seems rather poignant that someone is honouring their blood ancestors in this way so very close to where I've honoured my ancestors.
Witchlet Two and I went to check on "my" grave, especially to check on the snowdrops I planted last year. The leaves had come up, but no flowers this year. Which is perfectly normal for transplanted snowdrops the first year; the important thing is that the bulbs have survived. I bet there will be flowers next year.
Witchlet Two decided she wanted a flower at this point, so I explained why she couldn't take flowers from the tended graves. She nodded solemnly, and then I spotted a large patch of crocuses under the willow right in the middle of the cemetery. No harm in picking two or three crocuses for Witchlet Two amongst the hundreds of blooms there. So I did, and she was thrilled.
She then deliberately chose three graves to put a flower on each. Like a complete bloody idiot, I didn't take note of which three graves, I was just so fascinated to watch her choose carefully, tipping her head to one side, tapping her chin with one finger while deciding. She placed each flower down gently, patting the ground as she did before skipping off to the next one. We met up with The Hubster and Witchlet One as we went back up the hill. (It's always struck me as mildly silly to have a cemetery on a hill, all the gravestones eventually keel over and start a slow procession down, but it does make for a spectacular view!). Witchlet One doesn't like the cemetery much. He's very aware of his own mortality, which is odd for a seven year old, and it scares him a little. Plus they play "Zombies" in the school playground (shockingly, some of the kids in Witchlet One's year seem to be watching The Walking Dead - which scares the living shit out of me.). Time to leave, then.
We headed out to the local RSPB sanctuary for a walk after that. The Witchlets were charged with the job of looking out for signs of spring - they duely found fresh leaf shoots on the hawthorn - and then to look for "treasures" - stones, feathers, anything that sparked their interest. This of course soon resulted in me weighed down with two pockets full of stones and carrying a handful of sticks!
As we walked by a small stream, I spotted the remains of a swan on the other side. I really wanted to cross the stream and pay my respects, but I didn't want to bring it to the attention of Witchlet One - he would have been inconsolable. (A common belief about autism is that autistic kids have no empathy. Witchlet One has empathy in spades, and can be devastated when people are hurt, or upset, but dead animals are the worst for him.). I wanted a feather or two from the swan, and as I turned to walk on, there on the path in front of me was a large white feather. Thanks, swan, gifts like that are so meaningful. Not sure what I'm going to do with it as yet - but there's some potent magic there, I'm sure of it.
Oh, and it's taken me four days to write this damn post on my bloody phone!