At the moment that I am meant to be writing; I have a book in my head. And a schedule.
However duties that involve giving my son a lift to his workplace, a cafe on a nearby beach, are distracting me. The skies and the shoreline pull me away from my desk and I find myself busy picking blackberries and sloes. Blackberries pack out the freezer waiting until I have picked all that I can. Then I will make jam.
Meanwhile I have made my first ever batch of sloe gin. Although I have not been able to do this perfectly: the jar that it is currently in (above) has a wonky stopper that does not fit properly. It must be decanted into a Kilner Jar; and soon. I am concerned that even as I write alcohol is evaporating. Perhaps it will be drunk by angels. Who knows?
I write the book in my head as I walk. I am fascinated by fruit picking; it feels a spiritual experience because it works on so many layers; firstly there is the alchemy of the fruit its self; the yeast on the skin of the sloes before they are picked echo the blue of the sky. Then I like the degree of abundance. This year because it was so hot and there was so little rain; I thought that blackberries and sloes would be scant. But this was not so; it was the opposite. They were more abundant. Riotous and joyful even. Then I enjoy the fact that having picked as many blackberries as I can walking one way; when I turn around and come back I spot more. Just by looking at things differently. How great is that!
I disregard the bramble scratches, nettles; the purple juice that stains my hands and think of my childhood. I am blessed because my childhood contained both my aunt Jenny (RIP) who liked to make sloe gin and my mother Barbara who within all of the difficulties that life threw at her still had the strength to stand and make blackberry jam. Later in the year her work transported summer sweetness, easing our way in the harshness of winter.
So if I am being kind to myself I can repackage foraging and preserving into preparation for writing rather than distraction and procrastination. I am excited by the thought of my new book. The winter months will be the perfect time to write. One aspect of the book is about standing strong in changing times. Jars of jam in the cupboard; bottles of sloe gin, encapsulate to me how blessed I am; how resourced. Hopefully this strength; through the writing that I am musing now will assist with the realignment and repair of the world. (Please G-d).
Here is an Angel Blessing for the day:
” You are permitted to wend your way and access joy; although humans are delegated to work the days also contain treasure and riches. These are yours too. Enjoy”.
My early wishes to you for a wonderful weekend. x