On this peaceful Saturday morning I am finally sitting down to do some more blogging and I am checking out some of the exotic plants and shrubs that we came across during our visit to the Drishane Gardens. We also visited the house and the museum, where a remarkable woman spent most of her life in the late 19th and early 20th century: Edith Somerville, the great granddaughter of Thomas Somerville. She was a writer and an artist, wrote several works together with her cousin Violet Martin, among their works the one considered the best is The Real Charlotte a book that I am not familiar with but that I have now requested from the library as I have become interested in what those women had to say, even while they said it through the medium of fiction. I loved visiting her studio, now a small museum where some of her correspondence, drawings and photographs are displayed, giving a real impression of Edith’s life. She was a feminist and familiar with Emmeline Pankhurst and her activism, though far removed from all the action itself here in West Cork, it inspired Edith’s thoughts. I want to explore this more for myself, I find reading about her spirited artistic life here in rural Ireland fascinating and in a way very inspiring. Living here for many years now I have never made myself familiar with Edith Somerville, all I ever did was watching a televised version of The Irish R.M. which was written by Edith and her cousin Violet.
The gardens are particularly beautiful and lush, I was there with my daughter Tjorven and my five grandchildren, all of whom love nature, the children loved exploring these gardens. For us adults there were some exotic shrubs and trees to enjoy, some of which I took photos of and looked up some information about them. The above beautiful and fragrant white flower is the Eucryphia Lucida also called ‘Leatherwood’, an Australian native plant it flourishes here very well and bees love.
We all enjoyed this visit very much indeed, it has made me so some research and I will enjoy continuing with reading up more about Edith Somerville and her life and times.
I hope that you enjoyed our wander around this amazing and inspiring place, probably one of the most memorable visits of summer 2021. I will be curious to read stories of your summers too my dear readers.
Thank you to my dear sister Josephine. She has spent her life editing literary magazines, and she is now my editor, most of her work with me exists in correcting my use, or not use, of commas, and I am entirely grateful to her for doing that.
Harry Clarke is well known for his use of the most beautiful colours, deep blues especially delight the eye. This is one of the stained glass windows in St.Barrahane’s Church in Castletownshend, Ireland, there are three windows designed by Harry Clarke in this little church. We spent some time here last Sunday as my latest grandchild was being christened. Because of the week that was in it there was not much work done in the garden, apart from the hedge cutting. I went on an outing with my daughter and grandchildren one of the days, we did some shopping but also walked along the estuary and bird sanctuary at Timoleague and saw the ruins of an old abbey there (http://www.timoleague.ie/abbey/default.html). And on Friday we had a crafts day with the two oldest girls, we made a treasure box from scrap items which they thought was great fun! Then on Sunday there was yet another outing to the christening, and a stroll along the country road where the starlings were making a racket but otherwise all was very peaceful.
Meanwhile it is the second of November and still the weather is mild and a golden sun burnt away the grey skies this morning. So far we have been really blessed with the weather here which we gratefully accept after a rather cool and sunless summer.
Sts Louis IX and Martin of Tours – stained glass window by Harry Clarke.
Sunday stroll around the old pub where we had lunch, an old farm door took my interest.
Magically recreated soap powder boxes. And deep pink hydrangeas along the Irish country roads.
Starlings gathering in the trees, and autumn leaves all along the hedgerows.