Desert Island Blogs (2)

I’m thinking.

On the radio programme they used to ask the subject about their early life and such stuff.

Well, my first memories are of living in the middle of a field just outside York. A local farmer had built a bungalow in the middle of the field as a home for his cowman, but had ended up selling it. That would be about 1960-61. Out of all the memories of the time, one that stands out is of someone knocking on the door and asking to use our telephone as he’d broken down. No mobiles in those days, and no fear of strangers. I have more memories, but how many do you want?

The first blog is A Suffolk Lane by Clare Pooley. Clare has been busy recently and my insights into rural Suffolk have been more limited than I would have liked this year. When she has time to post she covers a variety of subjects – church architecture, walking, flowers, East Anglia, family, art and birds. I like East Anglia, and have a whole tribe of in-laws living in Suffolk, so this is a nice relaxing read.

I don’t think I’d be overegging the pudding to call it a rural idyll.

After York, we moved to Blackburn, which wasn’t such a nice place. There was a fascinating canal at the top of our road, which I now know to be the Leeds-Liverpool Canal. It was full of sticklebacks, which I used to net and keep in jam jars. I suppose that’s considered a bad thing these days.

The next selected blog is Salmon Brook Farms, the blog of Lavinia Ross. Β Based in Oregon, the foothills of the Cascades, she and her husband growΒ apples, blueberries, cherries plums, pears, grapes, persimmons, grapes and hazelnuts. This seems a lot of work, even before you consider the music. And the cats, though the cats do help by writing part of the blog. I’ve never had useful cats. Ours just lazed about the place, eating, killing things and looking at me with contempt. That’s an example followed by my kids, though they don’t stalk the garden killing song birds.

In this month’s post she shows us wasps in the blueberries (with an inpressive shot of the nest) and discusses visiting foxes – they have three sorts of fox compared to our one.

Meanwhile Nano the cat has posted pictures of a skull for identification.

At one post a month I will be sitting on my desert island waiting eagerly, which will give me something to look forward to apart from typhoons and another meal of fish and coconut.

After Blackburn we moved in with family in the village of Chatburn, just under Pendle Hill. I was able to go to the same school as my parents and was taught by a teacher who had taught my mother. Here is the link that refers to the bombing raid I have mentioned previously, when my mother had to shelter under her school desk.

My third selection for the day is Notes from the Hinterland by Laurie Graves, author of Maya and the Book of Everything. I’m afraid I haven’t read it as I don’t read Young Adult fiction but it has good reviews so if it’s your sort of thing you could give it a go. It’s interesting to follow her visits to libraries and other events, and to see that books are still very much alive despite digital competition.

The rest of the posts cover things like ice cream, cycling, dining, farmers’ markets, French ancestry and a circus visit.

I’ve always quite liked Maine after watching Murder She Wrote, but it turns out, on consulting Wiki, that the programme is filmed in California, and the real Maine is subject to snow, mud, winter storms and, in summer, excessive heat. There’s always something to learn from a blog…

And when I’m too hot on the Desert Island, I can read the bits of the blog that refer to snow.

Part 3 will follow soon.



25 thoughts on “Desert Island Blogs (2)

  1. Pingback: Desert Island Blogs (3) | quercuscommunity

  2. higgledypiggledymom

    Gosh…where to start? I continue to learn from and about you. LOVE the phrase you used about over egging the pudding. It may find it’s way into my conversation-just to make people take pause. Um..I like YA books for the speed, ease and usually a better story, so I will check your suggestion out. Maine is on my list to visit-but snow, mud, excessive heat? Well, that just sounds like my home state without lobsters.

    1. quercuscommunity

      Careful what you learn from me, I do have some bad qualities. πŸ™‚

      I am about to re-read the Narnia books when I can find them in the chaos but I’m not sure it’s good for grumpy old man persona to read more YA fiction.

  3. Clare Pooley

    Thank-you very much, Simon! I am very grateful for the kind comments and am so surprised that you have chosen me. I would also choose both Lavinia’s and Laurie’s blogs to amuse me on my island. I have read Laurie’s book and found it exciting and so well written that I became totally immersed in the story.

    1. quercuscommunity

      It’s been a tough job sorting eight out from all the great blogs out there – though I did manage to cut out fashion and fitmess blogs quite quickly!

      Glad you agree with the remaining choices . I now have to fit another half dozen into the remaining two slots. πŸ™

    2. Laurie Graves

      Oh, thanks so much for recommending my blog. And my book! Wowsah! As for the weather, except for the muddy month of March, most Mainers like the combination of cold and heat πŸ˜‰


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