new years eve

 

Gloves, scarf, boots and hat, nothing is enough to warm me up when I work in the woods, while I am cutting down the trees, or cutting of the pastures, I cannot ignore the winter sun with its yellow light and the clear and far horizon.

The forest carpet crackles under foot with the fallen leaves of autumn, with the changing sunlight it sometimes resembles a fire, then the  wind stirs up the leaves, and makes different pattens  with each breeze

The landscape is bigger in winter and breaths, at nightfall the frost brings a white coating to the soil and plants, and its easier for the donkeys to clean  the roots around the trees, which are now rich in acorns and chestnuts,

The biggest pleasure is in the afternoon, when the sunset takes all our attention, because between December and January , its sets over the triangle of sea on the horizon, that we can see from our terrace.

The sky turns an incredible colour of red, pinks and mauves! The mood in this time of the year, is the one I am waiting for all year long. Its like a late Christmas gift just for me. It’s a precious time to fall in love with nature.

So at the end of natures performance, and after we have cleaned and closed the stable, I can climb the hill to my house and enjoy the comfort and warmth of the wood burner, the stove is the centre of my home, for cooking bread, making soups, drying clothes and the soothing hiss of the wood keeps me company.  The children play around the fire, my husband and I talk of the days work, while we clean the maize and make baskets, this is the centre of my home during the winter.


On the last day of the year, we make a bonfire with all the branches from the cleaning of the forest, on this bonfire we place a witch that we have made from a left over scarecrow from the fields, we stuff the scarecrow with hay and place it on the fire, at midnight we set fire to the bonfire, to burn the witch, and hope that it takes all the decease  from the fields and forest, and surrounds us and our home with security and happiness.

We are happy to share our traditions with guests that come and stay here. If you arrive from far away, you will take with you memories of the sunset, the woods and the fire.