Hot Dusty Days

Updated: Mar 1, 2020

The blue skies appear to stretch on forever with barely a wisp of cloud to be seen. The days are searingly hot, it beats down on us and the animals, causing all to seek shade whenever possible. The slightest breeze is a relief.

The harvest times you imagine, endless summers of reaping the rewards of months of growing are upon us.

The air is hot, dry and dusty. The old potato lifter clatters and clangs noisily and clouds of dust coat the inside of my mouth and settle on my clothes and skin.

The grass tracks and surrounding heathland of Bryher are now crisp and golden. The fields of once bright yellow marigolds are scorched and brown.

We are digging in the field named Lower Gerry and only a few metres of sandy heath and a sparce pittisporum hedge separates us from the sea at Great Par. The soil is so sandy and fine it slips through my fingers like warm powder.

Graham drives the tractor and I pick up the spuds, by the time we’ve done two rows I am dreaming of the cool, refreshing sea.

My friend Nellie is staying for a while, together we head down the little road towards Great Par. The roadside alongside the little granite cotrages of Glenhope are now towering with beautiful agapanthus, their blue matched by the blue of sky and sea in the distance.

White calling gulls soar overhead and little white sails drift on the hazy blue horizon. The crystal clear water is shimmering and the sunbeams flood down through the water and ripple and bounce on the seabed.

It is satisfyingly cool and smooth and I can feel the stickiness and dust of work wash away. We swim out past rocks lined with gulls and green beds of bladder wrack.

It’s a shame to leave the water, but as we stroll back to the farm, leaving others to take our place in the sea, the feeling of warm sun on cool skin is blissful.

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