This beautiful weather vane belonged to an old village friend and neighbour of ours, Oscar. At one time, Oscar and his late wife had a much loved red setter and even had a painting of him on their living room wall. I believe the one on the barn was a gift from one to the other and may have been made by the village blacksmith, though I could be wrong about that.
This huge old ash tree used to shelter my old friend, Benedict, Oscar's old horse. He'd stand in the shade and watch to see whether anyone was coming by with a treat for him. I could never resist and stopped by most days.
Oscar would normally come out for a chat and he would tell me about the old days in the village, his beekeeping experiences, farming in the old days, details of life in Little Bunting and the wonderful events which used to be held in the village hall.
The ash looks like two trees, but Oscar and I checked it out carefully and it began life as one tree which divided. Split ash trees are said to be special, to hold magical powers! It is reckoned to be almost 200 years old.
The tree is still standing but my friends have left.
Benedict has gone to pastures new, and Oscar to a Care Home in a small town just a few miles away. The paddock looks very different without either of them.
Many of us in the village have clung on to the hope that Oscar may one day return. Realistically we knew that he wouldn't, but still we hoped.
A few weeks ago a 'For Sale' board went up, quickly followed by a 'SOLD' one. So that is that.
|Benedict's empty stable,|
untouched since he left.
I felt I had to call round for one last session with my camera, remembering my old friends and the happy times we shared there.
The empty house and paddock, the crumbling old stable, with Benedict's old hay net still hanging by the door and no Oscar.
It was very sad, poignant.
But then I noticed the weather vane turning in the wind.
The winds of change are blowing.