Happy New Year from Lush Places, Dorset

It's the last night of the year and it's already dark out there. It's only just past four o'clock.

I am useless with dark nights and dark mornings. My days become so truncated, I am at my least-efficient-worst. By four o'clock it's time to take the dog out and, once we've come back, well, it's time to get the supper ready.

The mornings are probably worse. I'm an early riser but it's not much fun walking the dog in the dark.


This was our view of Lush Places early on Boxing Day from Bluebell Hill.

By the time we approached the top, the sun was rising. The air was still, the odd bird was stirring and water droplets fell from rain-soaked leaves with a strange popping sound onto the beech nut floor.


It was a magical experience, this solitude. I closed my eyes and breathed in my surroundings. The dog and I walked around the top, pretending to be ancient Britons, with not a soul in sight, and then back down again, slurping through the mud, before the Boxing Day melee began.



Later, I lost it on Boxing Day, as I tried to get from my cooker to the sink in a crowded kitchen in an otherwise empty house. Faced with a wall of relatives, I yelled 'excuse me!' at the top of my voice. It was mostly my side of the family who were in the way so, luckily, not too much damage done.

Tonight I'll be in the pub for a film-themed New Year's Eve party, with DJ Landlord on the decks. I'm dusting off my Princess Leia wig and will take a deep breath before joining the happy throng.

In 2019, early morning walks are on the top of my New Year wish list. I want to get up there before anyone else does. Alone but not lonely. Immersed in nature and the seasons.

In the meantime, may your year be peaceful, happy, healthy and full of wonder.

That's about it.

Love Maddie x


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