Friday, 27 August 2010
Here's my lunch yesterday, a lovely spread prepared by Dorothy and Stuart Webb of Honley, friends from the heroic days when my Dad fought and won Colne Valley in Yorkshire for the Liberals by wafer-thin majorities after elections where every vote mattered and you got into deep discussion on countless doorsteps. I remember moths and butterflies coming up in these chats occasionally, not so much in terms of the 'green' debate as would probably be the case these days, but via sympathy for the depredations of 'cabbage white' caterpillars. You get quite crafty after canvassing electors from your early teens, and I think I knew how to give the impression, as opposed to actual commitment, that cabbages would fare better under the Liberals.
Well, now we have a Liberal (Democrat) deputy prime minister and several members of the Cabinet. But as you can see from this second photo, the promised land is only coming slowly. I was very pleased, though, to get a close-up of the perpetrator, as I'd told Dorothy that I wanted to feature her and Stuart's lovely garden, partly because she is a faithful reader of this blog. Actually this butterfly - the Small White, making its third appearance here in less than a week - isn't actually guilty. It used to be, in its previous life as a caterpillar, but now it's seen the light and drinks only nectar. Normally, as previously described, whites are nervy and hard to photograph. But this one was a bit damp after a shower, I think. You can see the droplets on what's left of the sprouts leaf. Note too, that even though the butterfly can't get away, it isn't flustered and is actually making good use of the water by drinking it - see the proboscis out. How disgusting! A sort-of very dilute cabbage juice.
Now, I promised to show D & S's garden, the glory of Honley. It would need a separate blog to do it justice, but here are a couple of glimpses. Their tomatoes are just fabulous too.