A hazy shade of spring here in Dorset

There’s a hazy shade of spring here in the village today, but still with a slight chill in the air.

Those wearing flip flops and shorts are pushing it. Although, on the sunny side of the street, it almost feels like summer. In fact, a small-boned girl on a low, fat pony has just ridden past in a short sleeved T-shirt.

Gangly teenage boys, whose voices are in the process of breaking, form a bundle on a trampoline in the garden of a holiday let, their voices going up and down, up and down and echoing around the village.

In the fields, there is a plenty of badgers’ muck, which the dog takes as an open invitation to roll in with great glee. She has never been so happy.

With dog safely on the lead, the sheep just bleat and baa as lambs go astray and then run back to mum, confident in the knowledge that they’d know her voice anywhere.

The rising sun shines on their backs, creating white outlines like silver linings on fluffy clouds. The horse chestnut leaves are big and brash, forming a perfect candelabra base for the emerging flowers.

There are bluebells in the hedgerows and on the hills, glossy celandines (a precursor to their more sophisticated sisters, the buttercups), emerging cow parsley (in my Somerset farming family we always called it gypsy lace), campions about to burst open, violets hiding in the hedgerows and the wonderful cuckoo flower marching across the meadow.

Leaves on the trees are beginning to stir, but they’re still not quite ready. The best is yet to come.

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