Sunday, August 08, 2010

in an English country garden...

A joy of my recent holiday was the chance to be at one with nature. Before questionable visions of fields of hay and/or nakedness appear I assure you that (for shame) no tree hugging occurred.  Instead,  I enjoyed the chance to sit, listen and observe nature as it went about it's daily business.

On the left you can see a blue flying beastie.   I had been to visit a beach and on the way out was captivated as it, and a partner flew up and down - flying beside each other and landing on different plants.   While their interaction looked platonic, there was a beauty to the moment that is difficult to capture and impossible to photo!

On the right you see a butterfly.   The butterfly was a definite star of the holiday.  Where-ever I turned I couldn't gaze for more than two minutes without spotting a butterfly.   Their delicate wings, in distinct contrast to their surroundings (often prickly or blustery) somehow survive and continue to protect and guide the creature as it gathers nectar for food.   One wonders if our trip to the supermarket will ever be viewed as something beautiful and worth viewing.... my thought would be not.  Why?

Supermarkets overall have ensured humanity has access to cheap food, 24-7.  However it has come at a substantial price - a centralised purchasing system has revolutionised farming so that now we see those who produce the food under the influence of those who sell it - rather than an older style of system that sees the power in the hand of the producer.  The impact of this cannot be understated, yet was made clear while on holiday.  I couldn't fail to cycle through a village without seeing a sign indicating eggs or courgettes for sale.  Besides wetting my appetite for home-grown courgettes (due any day now at home!) they survive as a reminder that localised food is available if you look and cheaper than most major supermarkets!

Unfortunately my re-communed self was rudely awoken upon my return. As the slideshow above illustrates, nature doesn't just look pretty.  It gets on with what it's good at, survival!  The purple sprouting broccoli that had been lovingly tendered and watered was savagely cleaned out by our resident caterpillar population.  With no need for posh middlemen/women (because that's all supermarkets are) they had found food, devoured it and moved on.   While distraut that our crop had been savaged, I couldn't help but marvel at their lovely colours and simple productive efficiency at clearing the garden.

Whatever you have for dinner tonight take some time and think - could I grow this or get it direct from the grower?

Take Care Y'all


1 comment:

  1. Your growing courgettes as well. My Dad's been growing them, and I'm trying to find new and interesting recipes to cook them in.

    Courgette Fritters are very nice.