The spring marches on – the past week may have been cold, but the daffodils keep creeping north. Watch out, Kate D! for they are coming for you.


Crocuses at Magdalen College. It has been both quiet and very busy couple of weeks. Many exciting things happening – I have planned travels, bought tickets, heard wonderful music, met people, fallen in love with old friends all over again, been inspired and exhausted. Holidays are so close I can smell them, and my head is heavy from lack of sleep. So many things to look forward to! and summer is just one of them.


My secret place. I love this cemetery (I know, I know); it’s a small haven of quiet in the middle of the city, and has the best flowers of any season – a carpet of snowdrops in February, awash with cowparsley and bluebells in May. And there is a lilac tree in the shadow.



Another visit to the butterflies of the Natural History Museum…


…and a day out with a friend. The pie lunch was a sweet, delicious mistake.


The Port Meadow lake is gone, and I miss its shining waters.


Read about my “interesting” visit to Stratford-upon-Avon and about my Shakespeare project in here.


Spring daffodil. The tulip season is over, so my flat now smells of daffodils. They such cheerful, almost vulgar flowers, full of sunshine and completely unrepentant.



More January tulips. The season is nearly over, sadly.


I had my birthday in February, and a good friend took me out for tea to celebrate, as well as giving me a a cushion she had made, all wrapped in bunting. So, so lovely!


Cake and sparklers – I don’t usually have birthday parties these days, but this year I joined forces with a pair of my fellow knitwits for a celebration.


What I in theory did during the half term.


What I really did during the half term – the Natural History Museum in Oxford opened mid-February, and I was glad to be back there, after year and half (or so) of closure. I have missed the dodo.


I have really missed the dodo.


And the butterfly collections.


See previous post for my glorious day out at the Port Meadow. After half term, the floods were mostly gone at least in the town centre; even the Madgalen College water meadow was dry, meaning these shining waters don’t have long left now.


How do I love thee, Jericho? Let me count the ways. This area is due for a major redevelopment, and while it will no doubt make it nice and raise the profile of the area, a litte bit of me is sad to see this rather gothic backyard of Oxford to turn into a slick and modern community centre. The slightly run-down area around the St Barnabas church is one of my favourite places in Oxford, and one that really has a unique feel to it; I often go there to be inspired, and fear this feel will be lost when it’s all rebuilt.


Still loving my L.L. Bean hunting boots.


Last few weeks have been exceptionally busy professionally for me, so a night of swing dancing and champagne with friends was a welcome break.


A friend is in Merton College, and on Saturday we headed to Sheldonian for Merton’s 750th anniversary shinding. Elgar’s Dream of Gerontius was a slightly baffling choice for the occasion, in all its Victorian glories, but the piece has some beautiful music – not least the finale with the Angel and the chorus, my eternal girl crush Sarah Connolly holding an audience of a couple thousand in her grip. Such a beautiful voice, such a beautiful woman, such power of interpretation.


Spring or not, the sky is already still light when I live work now. Huge relief after a bleak, bleak winter.