Wednesday, 23 May 2012

scenes from the rollercoaster, part 93:

Yesterday, Chip felt awful, unexplained and immovable pains, nausea, hot and cold shivers, an inability to eat, deep misery – C dreading that this presaged another hospital bout, rather than the holiday she had planned for later in the week; we went to the GP in the late afternoon and got a broad spectrum anitbiotic for what she (the GP) thinks might be a urine infection underlying all the other symptoms, and C had a quiet evening zonked on prescription meds (most anti-nausea medicines seem to be small quantities of heavy-duty sedatives and anti-psychotic drugs) falling asleep in front of recordings of Homes Under the Hammer.

This morning, she suggested we take a walk up the hill behind our house, to the oaks where her ashes are to be secreted, and she positively zipped up the slope, without aid of sticks or asthma medication; we saw several hares, and a roe deer doe, and admired the wonderful view over the village and the extraordinarily blessed and verdant valleys and hills in which it nestles, with that special Devon colour combo of red earth, lush green and clear blue and white in a sky rinsed by the Atlantic, and felt privileged to be alive and here in the infinite now. 

the old oaks
Then, again at the instigation of the valetudinarian, we extended the venture by climbing to the top of the field, and over a fence into the grounds of Creedy Hall, the stately(-ish) home on the other side of the hill, where we walked through the Rookery Wood that tops it, admiring the natural gardens of mossy tussocks and nodding campion, shuttlecocked ferns and starry stitchwort, listening to the birdsong pinging down from above, all pleasures heightened by the thought that we were basically bunking in to someone's garden – although with C parading around in her sapphire pendant, cashmere and £2,000 shoes, I don't think any would have dared challenge her. It was glorious

Dressed for the country. The shoes are bespoke, and made from reindeer leather recovered
early in the 20th century from a Russian ship that sank in the late 18th century
And on the way back down the buttercup-strewn hill we stopped at the oaks, and Chip nominated the very hole where she wishes her remains to reside (and those of Kezzy, too). Neither of us believe for a moment that she will be able to appreciate the view once comminuted, but both agree that it's a fine and fitting place for her to end.

Later, we planted out some salvias that arrived in the post today, and some sunflowers C had raised from seed, had a fine outdoor lunch of smoked salmon and creamcheese on Finn Crisp rye biscuits, with cracked pepper and lemon; then I came in and wrote this, with moistened eyes, but, this time, not tears of sorrow.

Tomorrow, once we have taken possession of some oxycodone patches (C keeps throwing up the slow release tablets) we are going to the quaintly and ironically named Hope Cove, to stay for three days in a hotel on a low clifftop above a sandy beach looking out westward over the sea towards Cornwall: the weather forecast is for sunshine and 25°: we'll probably be home on Sunday, but as that day marks our 30 years as a couple, we may just do something giddy...

That's enough pics of C in the Rookery

Oh go on then, just one more, framed in campion
The way home

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