Readers who subscribe to my other blog will know that in early October I broke my upper arm. It's been a long two months and I've been somewhat reclusive since then, venturing out for little local walks when I have had the energy - and not at all in the recent sub-zero temperatures we have not-been-enjoying in the normally temperate UK. But things do, eventually return to normal and yesterday saw a thawing, to our relief, although we have been comparatively lucky, sheltered beneath high ground.
My walk yesterday was the first for weeks and it was simply the same route I've been treading for eight years. It is hard to see it with a fresh eye, especially when one is feeling dull and tired. Winter is, by definition, a fairly lifeless season but the winter greens are managing to push through. Over to my left, as I negotiate icy mud, our village nestles almost camouflaged in the landscape like a brown sleeping mouse in a bundle of dead leaves.
The sheep seem to be weathering the cold, as are the many flocks of crows and jackdaws which punctuate my walk with constant cackles and caws.
But just as it seems as if nothing can break through my ennui, I notice the vivid tans and browns of the landscape, glowing in the warm sun which is melting the last of the snow.
And the way a cloud formation can look exactly like a giant bird of prey in hunched, hunting position, tail down and wings spread.