Wednesday, 29 July 2009

No one loves a lichen lover!

The gorgeous girl and I have just come back from a few days bonding in and around the Cotswolds. She wanted to get a feel for a couple of possible university towns and I wanted to get away from it all and enjoy her company, some eye candy and some nice weather. Well, as the song goes two out of three ain't bad!

The weather was much as we've come to expect with lots of grey skies interspersed with heavy showers. I love the way we Brits, undeterred, still hang out the bunting in the sure and certain knowledge that it will get very soggy!

We loved Oxford with its honey coloured colleges and quirky shop displays. Much time was spent dodging the showers and running from one to the other! But at least now I know what to do should I find the odd quarter or half of a Union flag!

Love the bicycle culture...

and loved these light fitting with shades covered either with union flags or with ribbons or paper in the right shades of red white and blue.

We meandered through lots of Cotswold towns: Chipping Norton, Stow on the Wold, Moreton in the Marsh, Shipston on Stour, Banbury and finally on the way home Warwick (the other uni town visited). This was quite a big deal for me as I'm not the best of drivers and have pushed myself out of my comfort zone to drive in unfamiliar areas this week. With my trusty navigator we managed really well and I can tick off 5counties I hadn't previously driven in!

It was only when I loaded up my pictures that I realised how many snaps I'd taken of things that had seen better days...

the chippy paint on a garage door...

the old faded fire bucket with its letters missing...

the crumbling stone work of those golden buildings...

the lovely aged patina of this corrugated roof...

the old graves covered in ivy and lichen...

and the old dry stone wall also covered in lichen...

I was enthusing over the lovely colours of the lichen and their aged beauty when my gorgeous girl informed me that "no-one loves a lichen lover!" - as lichen is nature's pollution indicator. It was hard to imagine how much pollution must have caused such huge amounts of lichen in such a delighful setting - the church in one village was covered in it.

So when I saw the message on the clock above, spotted in Shipston upon Stour, it served as a powerful reminder that time will march inexorably on taking its toll on our planet in ways both beautiful and destructive and that we have to invest time and effort now in helping save the environment for the sake of our children and their children. Now where did I put my wand?

Love Wend


  1. lovely post,looks like fun, that crumbling stonework looks like a kind of ghostly imprint....

  2. Wow! Your pictures are amazing! I LOVE the Art wall of framed flags, the green chippy paint, crumbling stone, the beautiful aged patina...ALL of it! Especially the Lichen :) What an awesome part of the World you live in♥

  3. beautiful images, i so love the way you look at the world. but oh my i never thought about lichen that way before, i shall be looking with different eyes from now on. wouldn't that magic wand be wonderful x

  4. Love that chandelier. Your photography is rather like mine. Whenever we go anywhere it's always the old and worn out things I seem to photograph (no, not my husband!). I have a penchant for old doors and flaky paint too.

  5. I have shot after shot of lichen.......... and graveyards hold a fascination....... x

  6. I have enjoyed reading your blog and can identify with so many of your postings.I have just come back from a rainy day in Oxford with my 15 year old daughter, we go fairly often as she loves the shops and indoor market and also has ideas about going there to uni.The two of also go to the Cotswolds every year for a couple of days just before Christmas and stay in Bourton on the Water. I love visiting all the antique shops in Moreton in the Marsh and the quirky shops in Stowe on the Wold. We usually have a day in Cheltenham or Oxford as well. The Cotswolds are very pretty at Christmas and less busy.