Sorry that I have been unable to post on the blog whilst away, but I cannot do it off my phone unfortunately. Also didn’t have a lot of painting time. I did try a bit outside one day but the paper was drying immediately it was so hot.
So now after my trip to Switzerland I am playing “catch up”.
I arrived in the alps to 2© and snow and left a week later in 35© of heat. The weather change was unbelievable, though there was thick snow still relatively low on the mountains. Flying out of Geneva in the early evening sunshine with Mont Blanc glowing white against a deep blue sky was spectacular.
The family have recently moved to a little village about 6k from where they living before. Washing up grandma now views alpine mountain meadows from the apartment kitchen window. Hay making was in full swing as soon as the weather picked up which was quite entertaining. As the ground is so steep generally a lot of the work is still done by hand. There appeared to four methods of rowing up the cut grass on the patches opposite us. Hand raked, the petrol” leaf blower”, a rakey thing on the front of something a bit like a rotovator and similar apparatus on a tractor on the less steep, lower meadows. It was so hot and dry they were able to make the hay in a day. Here in a normal summer we are usually talking four days for the hay to dry enough to bale up.
Also every morning, though unable to spot them, I could hear marmots whistling on the banks opposite. They have a very distinctive high pitched whistle if alarmed. They look such endearing little creatures. Part of the squirrel family they live in burrows and hibernate in the winter. If I get a minute I’ll attempt a marmot picture … will have to be from a photo of course.
The new place is also a very pleasant short walk from a little lake. In typical Swiss style, although in the ” middle of nowhere”, there is a small cafe and other facilities. They have also set up a “wake boarding”area, where people are pulled across the lake on a wire. We spent a virtual “seaside” day there sitting on the grass between the silver birch and surrounding pine trees; feeding the numerous fish with bits of picnic, sunbathing, but not swimming like some there. The water was absolutely freezing!
I think I ought to go away more often actually. GOS had pulled the stops out whilst I was away and done masses of work on the house and garden. I thought I would be coming back to loads of mowing grass – but he has kept on top of it and remembered to water my pots and polytunnel. The weeds didn’t stop growing despite the heat so next little job on the list is to get in the veggies and have a weeding session. . . . . . I will post again soon.