The Simple Pleasures In Life: a series of Out Loud blogs celebrating the little things that lift our spirits, bring us joy and sometimes even reveal the miracle of life itself.
Can there be anything more heart warming, miraculous, more simply pleasurable than spring bulbs putting forth their bounty?
Well no, clearly not … unless it occurs slap bang in the middle of winter. Which is what’s happening right now. There are green shoots sprouting in the pots outside my front door. And a host of golden daffodils look like they’re about to flower at any moment in a glade in Holland Park.
Which means that unless Mother Nature does some kind of emergency back-peddling (which today, if the weather is anything to go by, looks possible), in no time at all there are going to be snowdrops and hyacinths, daffodils and narcissi, springing up all over the place.
So the question I’m asking today is, if a simple pleasure doesn’t occur at the right time, in the right order does that mean it can no longer be considered a simple pleasure?
As some OUT LOUDERs know only too well, around three and a half years ago, we moved house and when we did so, we lost our pride and joy – Our Beautiful Garden. Our Beautiful Garden was an endless source of simple pleasures, so many and so profound, that I despaired of ever again really appreciating a stately delphinium or blowsy, yellow rose, let alone a spring bulb, without a pang of regret. True, we have a lovely roof terrace but it just didn’t feel the same.
Last winter determined to make the best of things, I decided to make a feature of our front pots so off I went to our local nursery to buy some bulbs. However, placing them in the little pots only reminded me of the abundance of bulbs I had once planted. And when they refused to flower before my trip away so that on my return I only got to enjoy their tail-end, I felt doubly cheated.
But this year, those lovely bulbs are making sure I enjoy them as soon as possible. Yet rather than giving them a hearty welcome, here I am grumbling and blaming them for coming up too soon. I deny myself the simple pleasure of their surprise appearance because in my judgement, the timing is all wrong.
Rather in the same way I resisted enjoying my beautiful roof terrace because it’s in the sky rather than on the ground.
Sometimes I can be a bit of an idiot, overlooking the riches of life spread out before me because things aren’t happening in exactly the way I think they should. And sometimes it takes a few little green shoots to remind me that I can’t control the world after all and to savour my simple pleasures when and where I can.