That's hard to believe when even with lights it was still hard to see the vehicle in front! At least almost everyone kept a good distance and travelled at the 50 mph recommended.
After Eliot's clean bill of health and booster jabs we had breakfast at a picnic table along the A1. The catering van from Magherally is always a good place to stop and the breakfast soda was more than I could manage ... to the dog's delight!
(Maybe you need to know that Eliot's appointment was for 8.45 am, so we were on the road quite early.)
Anyhow ... there are some cute features around their garden and this red kettle grabbed my attention immediately.
They also have a large number of spring bulbs in flower - just growing naturally under trees and on banks ... very beautiful!
Meanwhile back to the A1. (That's the main road that links Newry with the motorway to Belfast.)
Although I've stopped at the mobile café on a number of occasions I've never taken the opportunity to sit at the picnic tables or to explore the path into the woods.
Some of the paths were waterlogged but, by keeping to the higher ground or the gravel paths we managed to have a good wander and discovered a small lake!
There is something very relaxing about being in the open air and enjoying the variety of nature. It doesn't really matter what the day is like - there is something beautiful in every season and in all weather conditions. It is good, and necessary, to take time out. Time to play. Time to relax. Time to reflect. Time to do something different from the ordinary. Time with God.
Apart from the petrol (and the vet's bill) today didn't cost very much. I had change from a fiver for that huge sandwich and big coffee ... But it was fun. That's our first outdoor picnic of the year when it was warm enough (just) to sit at a picnic table!
Glory be to God for dappled things -
for skies of couple-colour as a brinded cow;
for rose-moles all in stipple upon trout that swim;
fresh-firecoal chestnut-falls; finches' wings;
landscape plotted and pieced-fold, fallow, and plough;
and all trades, their gear and tackle and trim.
All things counter, original, spare, strange;
whatever is fickle, freckled (who knows how?)
With swift, slow; sweet, sour; adazzle, dim;
he fathers-forth whose beauty is past change:
Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844-89)