Rural life: a five-a-day autumn

Living in the country is great for computer breaks. To get my bum off this seat and stretch my eyeballs beyond square I get my boots on and go for a walk, even if just a quick one before coming back here to work. At the moment my walks have an added bonus; I get titbits of autumn fruits all the way round!

It starts with the blackberries. Over the first stile there are brambles hanging right to the ground with rich ripe fruits. It can take me ages to get past and it really hacks off the dog who’s desperate to go for a run and not stand by some bushes that have no interest to her at all. I toss her one or two and she sees the advantage.

Next, about half way round, through a tunnel of hedges and trees there are plums. A beautiful bounty of golden clusters that weighted the branches down with their fruits. They were as thick as grapes earlier in the season and most now are gone, but there’s sometimes a late one that I can find and enjoy. The dog chews up the stone despite me throwing it when I thought she wasn’t looking.

Out in the open and along another hedge side further on I get to an apple tree. There’s nothing like the sweet crisp tangy taste of a proper English apple. It beats these foreign, pristine and perfect apologies of a fruit you buy in the supermarket, even if they do have the odd bug or two lurking in the core. Again, the dog gets a bit too because I feel too guilty not sharing. After all, she’ll be sharing the horrendous smells later on once they’ve worked through her system!

And finally it’s back to the blackberries again and a last munch through another brambles’ worth before returning indoors with that satisfied feeling I’ve easily topped up my five-a-day today without even trying! And there’s something extra specially wholesome about having picked and eaten it straight from the source with the wind singing through the hedges and the sun shining on the lovely land all around.

I try and keep the benefits of it wrapped around my consciousness as I return to the computer.


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