I go with a mission to out up the signs for next Sunday’s monthly FotG clean up. We missed July for a holiday. It’s hot I’m sleeveless and legless, loose in my dress feeling unshackled apart from the signs I’ve made, still wet under my arm. The Rosebay is happening in clouds of pink and whispy white across swathes of the park, it’s easy to be in love with this majestic plant and the way she sways. I must have hundreds of photos that never do her justice, and as I’m leaning in to take another I see a strange pattern through the lens, tufts gathered in a circle, its not so easy to make out in this strong light but I am startled by a large spider at the centre, a statuesque woman and some boys are passing, as she sees me in the vegetation she asks me what it is, meaning the rosebay, I tell her and she says lovely, and then I show the inhabitant, I hope she’s vegetarian I say, the woman, an elegant grandmother, thinks I’m teasing the boys, especially the elder who is unimpressed by anything that could interest us old ladies, and she laughs.
Earlier on this path I had found a strange and raw looking bleached shell cracked open, it looked familiar but oddly like china, stalk still attached and oozing slightly, it puzzled me. I found on my way back passing the hazel tree that there were some early windfalls, and the one on the path near the web was an early picking from some enterprising bird… must be a crow I guess to have made that strong break. I picked up some of the windfalls and placed them on the shelf L found last year for a hiding place to gift another hazel lover.
I put up the last sign at the zigzag and couldn’t resist taking a snap of it by the bench mark that N has recently discovered, and challenged us all with finding on the FotG fb page. I had guessed it might be on this wall as it dates back to the ordinance surveys of the 1840s, but he tipped me off anyway.