An irregular, irreverent, post-modern account of the surreal, the ordinary, and the bizarre happenings on and around the Felia lavender farm in Crete

Wednesday, November 23, 2005


It's getting dark now outside. I'm looking through the kitchen window at a fully laden olive tree blowing in the storm force winds. The grey undersides of the leaves are showing. Many of the trees will have been virtually stripped of fruit by the southerly winds but this one just by the mimosa is hanging on to its fruit relentlessly. The stake that was holding the mimosa dangled limply this morning, snapped at its base, but the mimosa itself is in tact. In the same window there is a reflection of one of our bookcases - lots of Penguin classics on the top row and so very orange. Behind me Gill is playing Monk on the electric piano (Sweet and Lovely). The dogs are curled up on the sofa beside her like two apostrophes. Bridey occasionally cranes her neck to watch Gill's fingers on the keyboard, sighs, and settles back down. Molly is curled tight and sleeps peacefully. I'm sitting at the partners desk in front of the Powerbook typing into PathFinder. To my left and behind me an LPG heater glows red and sighs.

It has been raining now for 26 hours - mostly on. In the off periods (maybe an hour in total) we have repaired last night's storm damage around the farm and cleared the dogs' run of olives, walnut cases and leaves. During a ten minute window this morning we emptied the stove of ash and restocked on logs for tonight. The fire is laid. The roses have been secured against tonight's onslaught to come and the second mimosa has a new stake. The avocado was removed to Gill's potting shed for avocados hate wind. We are ready.

And now the light has gone. It is dark outside - properly dark. The lights in the run and on the potting shed are, from here, the only lights in the valley. If I peer hard I can read the titles of some of the books reflected in the kitchen window. Gill is tackling the solo again and again, teaching her hands the shapes.

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