I’ve recently become fixated on the idea of water; in particular of under-water scenes, of pools and ponds, of drifting with fishes among reeds. I think it started six months ago when I began swimming regularly in the huge Commonwealth pool. There are no reeds or fishes in the swimming pool (although wouldn’t that make it a lot more interesting?) but I like the endless blue, the way noise ceases the moment you put your head under, the silent wafting legs of the other swimmers, the distant corners and the tiles moving slowly past.
In my endless replanning of the garden I have realised there needs to be a pool of some kind. As a child, it was my rule that no valid garden would lack water. It didn’t matter if it was a large formal rectangle with lillies, or a tumbling stream, or the infamous Chatsworth ‘Squirty Tree’, or even a damned bird bath. As soon as we entered a garden I was on the look out for (what my mother shudders to call) the ‘water feature’. All hell to plants; any garden that failed to provide water was not a garden worth visiting.
I’m not sure what form the water will take here in our front garden. Perhaps an old zinc bath filled with judiciously chosen aquatic plants (some submerged for oxygenation, some for floating flowers). It will be kept filled by the generous Scottish sky, and no doubt I shall spend a lot of time fishing leaves out of it.
Meanwhile, I have satisfied my hankering for underwater scenes by bottling summer in a Kilner jar for Cathy’s In a Vase on Monday. No, it’s not strictly a vase, but when has that ever bothered Cathy, who is always of a generous spirit in these matters? I’ve got away with worse than this before…