Now, probably because I do so much piano teaching, I hardly ever play, and my fingers are getting stiff (worryingly stiff; I will have to do some serious practise as it is impacting my ability to teach my more advanced students!).
What is giving me the same kind of weird unease these days is my overwhelming need to start doing some serious painting and drawing. This has never been a part of my life. However, more and more, I find myself desperate to put pen and brush to paper to try and reproduce what I see all around me every day.
I reckon I'm beginning to get the hang of oak trees, and now my attention is taken up by silver birches. These are on the road leading down to a rural village school.
And this beauty is in another school playground (apologies for my thumb in the top left hand corner!)
These lovely, graceful trees bring back memories
of the garden of the house where I grew up; long outdoor summer Sunday lunches (cold meats, french bread, tomato salad) and the pigeons cooing and the breeze riffling through the branches...
During a break between schools, I settled down with a cup of tea and had a go at using the photograph to draw my own silver birch. It was a bit of a hassle as the mobile phone keeps switching off every 30 seconds or so.
I'm happier with my second try. "Oh, a snow scene" was one comment. Well, no, I was actually thinking of early spring! I might put pond in the bottom left hand corner, but I don't know how to go about drawing ponds just yet. I'm using fine line permanent pigment pens in different widths.
Oh yes, I've been going on about the early daffodils. At risk to the traffic I did pause to take a quick snapshot, but couldn't hang about because someone suddenly appeared and I was half blocking the road. The daffodils closest to the car are well and truly out; the ones further along obviously get just a little less sun. It is the more spectacular because you come upon then as you suddenly emerge from a dark section of the lane which is shrouded in towering rhododendrons.