53 – Botanica

Dear Lucy,

Apologies for not having written in a while.  I’ve been away at sea on the HMS Bark Endeavour with my good friend Gertrude.

Our ocean bound adventure came about quite by chance after I went to my paper scraps drawer in Millie’s office and found my drawing materials to be stolen, presumably by some low life scoundrel who couldn’t be bothered to take the time to gather their own collection.  Not having been the victim of burglarisation (is that a word?) before, I didn’t quite know what to do other than become properly pissed off and have a good old rant with Vernon who’d just pulled into the depot car park in his ice-cream van.

Things started to take an upward turn as I walked back through the meadow licking a free orange lolly, given by Vernon who said it was in compensation but I think more likely given because it was just over its sell by date … and turned even further upward when, somewhere past the Campanula rotundifolia, I tripped over my stolen papers, which were now thoughtfully bundled together with a bright ribbon.  That was, however, until Gertrude flew out of nowhere and rugby tackled me to the ground whilst screaming a string of expletives that I dare not commit to paper for fear of sounding vulgar.  Our blazing squabble over the ownership of said papers, I’m sure would have continued for some considerable minutes were it not for me becoming distracted by a rather fine botanical drawing which flew past our tumbling heads mid altercation.

It turns out that Gertrude has been an enthusiastic sketcher of all things nature since becoming inspired by the works of Sydney Parkinson, artist aboard the Endeavour on its journey through the southern oceans in 1768.  She has a considerable collection of botanical journals, which I spent the afternoon perusing whilst Gertrude found a spare ribbon and divided the paper scraps into two equal piles.

Gertrude spent the rest of the afternoon showing me how to press flower samples between the pages of old books, I am including some of my collected samples in this letter along with a page from Gertrude’s current journal, which she thought you might appreciate as a gift.

COMMON LAWN DAISY

Bellis perennis

Common Usage

  • Daisy chain bunting
  • Salads
  • Herbal tea used in the relief of constipation.

Historical Reference

  • Daisy juice soaked bandages were used by the Romans to heal sword and spear wounds.

 

On recounting our afternoon antics over teatime at Millie’s cottage, Millie pointed out that Gertrude had two weeks holiday outstanding and suggested that maybe I should take her on a trip through the time tunnels to join Captain Cook’s great expedition.  Wildly excited by such a fabulous idea, Gertrude and myself set sail next week.

Hope this letter finds you well.

Love,

M.M.

Do you like to keep journals or press flowers?  Has anyone ever stolen your sketchbooks, paper scraps or art materials?  Have you ever been wrestled to the ground by a mouse with a potty mouth?   Morris would love to hear from you, so please feel free to hit the comments box.

Morris will get back to you mouse style.

© All images and story content copyright of lynncf

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