Oh, how I love the early mornings in spring. There is special quality to the light but perhaps it just seems like that after all those dull winter days when it never really gets properly light, when, as I’ve often said, it looks like twenty past four in the afternoon all day long.
Many years ago my mother acquired this vase. At the time I thought it was the most hideous monstrosity; I wondered why on earth she liked it so much? Our tastes seldom differed; we both couldn’t stand dolls, wondered why so many women went overboard for loads of soft cuddly toys – in particular teddy bears (the exception being those that had belonged to them as children, or to their own children) – or the Victorian boxes and so forth smothered in sea shells, or automatons, or even clocks, which remind us of time literally ticking away. But Mum loved this vase and I remember her filling it with the wild flower, Honesty. But not the actual flowers, but their seed heads which were like little discs of mother-of-pearl (nacre.)
Mum bought the vase from a lady whom I never met who’d had it on what is known as a credenza (an ornate display cabinet) which my mother also bought and which is now in our bed sitting room. But the vase is in our bay window and this morning I thought how beautiful the porcelain was with the sun shining on the painted flowers. It is quite a tall vase, about 17 inches, and about 9 inches at its widest part. It is hand-painted, not transfer-printed. There isn’t any distinguishing potter’s mark, but its quality sings out, whether or not you like this kind of thing or not. And with the sunlight shining on it, the photo taken at 6.15am, I can’t help but feel joy, remembering Mum’s delight in this vase, remembering the huge bunch of Honesty which she’d prepared for it, removing the outer casings of the seed heads to reveal, like an oyster shell, the wafer thin ‘mother-of-pearl’ concealed inside.
The best cup of coffee of the day is the first, is it not? And this is a large breakfast-size cup, not our usual tea cups. We bought only two of these because only ourselves were going to use them; they aren’t the kind of cups we offer visitors to our home to drink from – they are very large and rather heavy and so when I drink my early morning coffee from one of them, I support the cup with both hands.
I have been sitting, reading my book, The Memory Shop, which is appropriate as I’ve been thinking of my mother and her love of antiques and how she has passed that love down to me. The Memory Shop is about a young woman who for various reasons needs to clear her grandparents’ home after their death, and she ends up selling their antiques in her pop-up shop, endeavouring to match the items to whom she considers appropriate people, a delightful story.
I then moved around, taking photos of the early morning light on certain things in the sitting room and hall. The sunlight hasn’t yet reached the study where I’m now sitting as this room faces west.
Stocks in the sitting room, sunlight on the books and ..
freesias opening in the warmth of the early morning.
Meanwhile, in the hall, sunlight was leaching out almost all colour from our Panama hats on the desk …
My hat is the one with the black band, by the way.
And the barometer has moved in the right direction, indicating fine weather …
And the temperature was rising even as I was taking this photo of the thermometer in the hall …
Celsius on the left, Fahrenheit on the right
And back in the sitting room, sunlight leaching colour momentarily from part of the top of the bookcases …
That special light only lasts for a couple of hours until the morning has really woken up. I am now going to make a second pot of coffee, then shower and get ready for another day. I hope you enjoy your day, wherever you are.
Until next time.