As one year teeters into another, my body is all at sea.  A stray bug or perhaps the sigh of inactivity after the busyness of December.  Flu sweeps in on Boxing Day and the lead up to the year end is fever, aches and pains, a chest infection.  It leaves me with labyrinthitis, an ear condition I get sometimes that feels like constant motion sickness.  So there is no optimistic, energetic start to the year.  I can’t walk far, I can’t use a screen, I can only read for short bursts.  Confined to the house, I hardly notice the passing days, or what is happening outside.

So far winter has been short and kind.  There has been almost no rain and little frost.  It has been mild, often grey but often sunny.  The weeks leading up to the end of the year blinked by and I wonder if the rest of winter will be so quick.

It’s the second week of January when I’m well again and I walk to the sundial.  It is just after dawn but you would hardly know it.  The morning is grey with little colour.  Subdued greens and browns with only a handful of gorse flowers offering anything brighter.  Drizzle seeps from the sky.  A gaggle of mallards follow me hopefully around the edge of the pond, clucking quietly.  Otherwise there are few obvious signs of life.  A male blackbird clatters out of a ditch and across the path, glaring at me from a fence post.

Raindrops cling to the alders on the path to the sundial.  Up top there is little evidence that the sun has just risen.  The hills are a misty grey smudge with a hint of pastel orange in the west.  The sky brims with dirty grey cloud.  Only a small patch of illuminated pink shows where the sun might be.  The horizon is blurred, the sea nondescript, turbines foggy shapes in the distance.  I hear the two note call of a great tit.  Another joins it at the other side of the park.  It is icy cold up here, my limbs already feel chilled.

Two woodpigeons fly from the path as I descend.  A thrush sings a song full of climbing whistles.  A lone herring gull charms worms with his feet.  The sky lightens in patches until a wisp of cloud forms miniature inverted tornado in the distance, trailing upwards.  Later, the first snow of the year falls.  It is hardly recognisable as snow, only a hint of white and the way the tiny flakes drift distinguishes it from the morning’s drizzle.  It seems that winter hasn’t made up its mind whether to be fair or foul.  It teeters between the two.  But my enforced absence has meant that I’ve already noticed a change in the air.  Already the days don’t seem quite so dark.  There may well be storms to come, but the scent of spring is there, on the misty horizon.

Blogger Book of the Month: Teagan Geneviene – Atonement in Bloom

Blogging has introduced me to many talented authors, some of whom have featured on this blog.  This year I’ll be highlighting a few of the great books I’ve been reading by fellow bloggers.

I’m always delighted by the unique and magical stories that Teagan Geneviene creates, many of which are written spontaneously, week by week, on her blog.  Her new book, Atonement in Bloom is the second in a series of books set in the magical town of Atonement, Tennessee.  This book has all the whimsy, wonder and enchantment of the first.  Ralda Lawton lives in an old house in a small southern town that has more than its share of magic. A woman created from flowers, a mischievous calico cat, a herd of glowing pigs and the Queen of Winter herself all appear in this novel. I would love to live in the enchanted town Teagan has created and to meet the characters that are so lovingly and inventively depicted. This is a hugely original book that weaves myth and imagination into a compelling story. The ending suggests that there may be more to come in future and, until then, I’ll be homesick to return to Atonement.  You can find Teagan’s blog here and her books are available on Amazon.

164 thoughts on “Teetering

  1. I hope you’re feeling much better now, Andrea. I’m glad you got outside to feel the change in the air. Thank you for sharing the link to Teagan’s blog! I’m heading that way right now.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I am sorry you were so unwell after Christmas and into the new year, Andrea. My husband gets labyrinthitis now and again. Such a horrible affliction! There is scant warning of an attack and then he has to lie on the floor for hours until it goes away – and he’s so sick too!
    You write such evocative prose. Beautiful!


  3. So sorry to hear you weren’t feeling too good over the end of last year. Good to hear you are better and the year is underway for you. It does sound cold over there but lovely to hear that you can feel a twinge of spring in the air – which seems to be such a tease. Here in Melbourne, Australia, it is summer. Wish I could send you some warmth, Andrea 🙂


  4. Having suffered from motion sickness all of my life….I can only imagine how uncomfortable you must felt in the run up to the new year. Very glad to hear that it has passed and you are now back to health.

    I love your description of a winter’s morning….a time of the year I like a great deal. Someone once told me it’s because I am born in January…(or perhaps my Danish blood:) I don’t know about that, but I love the idea of coziness….of being and even the short days…perhaps because I am only too aware that spring will follow.

    I am a follower of Teagan and love her work. Thank you so much and may your creative juices continue to flow this year. Janet….

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I hope dear Andrea, that you are at last shaking off those winter chills, coughs and sneezing bouts that seem to affect those whose busy lives takes them by surprise as they let their guard down to rest a few days over the Christmas Holidays.
    I would often find myself plagued with heavy colds always when I had a holiday looming.
    I am unsure where you live, but the days of grey, and gloom sound familiar as here in the heart of Britain.
    I enjoyed your muse as you took through those grey clouds but sought to bring us joy as the thrush burst into song, while the gull, blackbird and pigeon flew in sight.
    I hope you are feeling much better..
    And your reminder of Teagans excellent writing, reminds me also after my own absence from visiting blogging friends for a few weeks, I must visit Teagan again to see where she is in her stories tale.
    I am forever catching up, but love her vibrant style of imaginative writing that takes us into the realms of beyond and back.

    Thank you also for your recent visit and I hope you end January feeling brighter, even though I think the weather may well plunge us into cold icy winds and sprinkle us again with snow.
    Much love
    Sue ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Sorry to hear you’ve been unwell and hope February will bring better health. I hear it might get colder though. All has gone well here except I am still struggling to find a publisher but a friend is working on some art work for me and so will probably self publish eventually. I will try Teagans and am reading a book ‘fragile balance of things’ published by Ashland Creek, an American eco lit venture. I’ve sent a submission to them.Worth trying. Take care


  7. Sorry to hear you had a poorly start to 2019. Being confined to bed or the indoors doesn’t suit many people, and I cannot imagine how you of all people dealt with it! I bet you’re happy to be out and about again. The winter has been mild here so far, too, but we still have a solid two months yet before we can even claim we’re into spring, so I shall knock on wood now….


  8. Sympathies for your difficult start to the year – I’m just recovering from my 3rd bad cold! Spending some time catching up on blogs – which I have sadly neglected – blessings – Lois


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