The summer of 2020, second part

I’m back to writing… I became bored by the idea of photography blogging after two weeks… or less.

If I ever mention to do photography blogging again, can you hit me in the head with something please?

Weather and the wooden deck

The late summer finally offered some nice summer weather. We had warm and sunny days for about a week, and then it’s mostly been what we call not too bad. That means, at least to me, temperatures warm enough to stay in a good mood but nothing that makes you hang around in the garden until late. The days are quite nice though, to go for walks or pick weeds or whatever you want to do.

We didn’t move to Ireland for the fabulous summers. But I’m happy to endure wind, rain, temperatures way below those in mainland Europe if that’s the only sacrifice for having short, mild and mostly snow free winters. For warm weather we can (at least normal years) go to Italy, like we used to do when we lived in Sweden, and usually there are weeks with decent weather here, just not the tropical temperatures they seem to get in the UK these days.

The summer of 2020 was truly awful, as if we needed that this year. We had a lovely spring, and the month of May was warm and dry – actually in early June they imposed a waterhose ban. That was quite quickly removed though, because the second half of June and most of July were the wettest and most dull since I don’t when.

But then came the last week of July, and first week of August, with nice warm weather. My husband finally built the wooden deck that I’ve been dreaming about most of the summer. This area behind the house is the sunniest and warmest area of the entire garden, and it can be enjoyable sitting here even if the weather isn’t perfect.

Our new wooden deck

Covid and music

In August, the cases of covid-19 started rising in Ireland. To begin with because of people having home parties, later because of workplace outbreaks and clusters in related households, but there’s also a certain community spread again. Most cases seem to be asymtomatic, but it’s still worrying, because of the knowledge about what this virus can to do the body, because of how random it seems to be. You don’t know if you’ll be asymtomatic or if you’ll die from it or be severely ill with remaining illness for years to come, even if you’re relatively young. The death rate has been extremely low here recently though, perhaps because most cases are under the age of 45. At least we’re nowhere near the spread in many other countries, and our area isn’t known to have major clusters, but still… I’m not comfortable with this.

I continue to cope with the pandemic the only way I can… by playing music. Before the daily cases started rising to around or over 100, we masked up and went to Dublin. I had been looking for a certain type of guitar for a while, to replace my small bodied Taylor. It didn’t do a good job for the music style I wanted to the play, and after playing my husband’s dreadnought I had exhausted my left shoulder. Dreadnoughts are large guitars, and, well, I’m not the large body type. I needed a smaller guitar with the right kind of sound, and there was one in Dublin.

My new Martin guitar

We came home with another Martin, the little sibling of the D-18, a smaller guitar in the 18 series. It may not be THAT perfect guitar for bluegrass picking, but for me in this moment, it is THE guitar, one that is small enough to enable comfortable playing and that still has a nice clear tone. I love it and I play it every day.

Read more about my music at Strings & Bellows.

Crocosmia

Late summer in Ireland means Crocosmia. These absolutely wonderful plants grow everywhere, with lovely orange or red flowers, and I LOVE them. I’m trying to grow them in my garden with mixed results. I’ve bought some bulbs this spring. We’ll see next year if I have any success. Otherwise I’ll just have to be happy enough with having them grow wild in the areas around me.

Crocosmia
Crocosmia
Crocosmia
Crocosmia
Crocosmia

In the end of August we had two storms, Ellen and Francis, with heavy rain and floodings in many places. There was a serious flooding in Bantry after Storm Francis, and Storm Ellen caused some major disruptions in other parts of Cork, with many households without power, fallen trees, and more. We usually have quite some wind, but during storms we’ve been spared so far, from any serious problems.

After the storms, the weather has been generally unsettled, with heavy rain, fog, and just simply miserable. Near Galway there was a severe flooding a few days ago. This year seems like it wants to say something like…. Feck off! I don’t want to know what the rest of the year will bring… I just want to sit in a dark room, play music and not read any news ever again.

I’ll leave you with this peaceful field that is located down the hill. It’s a lovely walk along that road and I’ll take many nice walks along that road yet before winter comes.

West Cork

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