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It’s back!

June 6, 2020

It always used to be the thing this time of year. Then for a few years it disappeared – a few years of long, hot summers with barely a drop of rain from early May to mid-September, years of worrying about the well running dry, about the increased risk of forest fires in those tinderbox conditions. Last year (or perhaps the year before) it came back.

Ladies and gentlemen, I give you what I have dubbed Juneuary, a month that should be dry and sunny but instead is wet and freaking cold. Last night I actually got a fire going. A fire! In June! I have never before had a fire going in June. I’m British for heaven’s sake. We don’t believe in overly warm homes. In the winter we just add a jumper or jacket to whatever we are wearing in the winter months. Most evenings this week I’ve been huddled on the sofa under a blanket. Last night I couldn’t take it any more and, yes, started a fire. Stella immediately curled up in front of the wood stove in gratitude. You’re welcome, sweetie.

There was one nice day this week. So nice that I dug the covers for the garden swing cushions out and had a lovely afternoon reading in the garden. This is my favourite time of year for this particular (lack of) activity because in early June it comes with a soundtrack of hundreds of bees buzzing around the blooming ceanothus.

Ten years ago, when I started the garden project with this…

Image may contain: tree, plant, bridge, sky, outdoor and nature

… I did a fair bit of research on bee-friendly plants. There seemed to be a general consensus that bees bloody loved the flowers of the ceanothus. Thus, one of the first things I planted after the initial clearing out was done was a small ceanothus.

ceanothus 2010
Ten years later, this is what the garden looks like.

garden 2018

And this is now that little ceanothus.

ceanothus 2019

It’s a good thing I got in my buzzing-soundtrack, quality reading time on the swing when I did, because it was the last warm, sunny day of the week. Even if the sun comes out again and the weather warms up it’s going to be a while before I can have any swing time.

Last night, while I was sitting warmly on the sofa, there was a torrential downpour. Good for the garden, no doubt, but bad for the garden swing cushions which are now soaked through and will have to be brought indoors to dry out.

I don’t miss having to start worrying about forest fires and the well running dry (which it did a few years ago in mid-September) before it’s even officially summer, but bloody hell. A fire in the wood stove last night?

Fucking Juneuary.

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