When I told a certain Devonian gentleman which road our new house was on he said “gawd, its rough up there!”. Or I think that was what he said. We had some initial communication problems. He refused to talk to me for the first 6 months of our acquaintance, examining the floor and muttering when I attempted dialogue, trying his hardest not to acknowledge my existence. My heinous crimes were being a blow-in, a female and having the cheek to be a head gardener. After this silent initiation, in which I refused to participate “Beautiful morning!” “How are you today?” “Nice to see you again”, and he realised I was not a monster/idiot/wimp, he rarely stopped talking. Very fast and very broad. I used to watch his lips move in the vain hope I would get more clues as it what he was talking about. As the weeks went on it began to make some sense, either he stopped laying it on thick or my translate-ometer kicked in. Generally his diatribes were concerning the private lives of local folk and their septic tanks. My lips are sealed. When pressed as to exactly what he meant by “rough”, he explained (again this is an estimate of meaning) that when the wind blew we would know it. How right he was. At this very moment the wind is howling outside like a low budget horror film; whistling, rattling, moaning. This morning as I forced my way out of the front door, shoulder to the fore, and spilled out into the fray like a champagne cork, I noticed one of my crocuses had a well developed flower bud. Needless to say I was very excited and, as is my habit, needed to share. Trying to take a photo in this weather is like trying to drink a dry martini whilst on a bouncy castle with the Samoan rugby team, very messy. This is my best attempt. I am tempted to call it art.