Christina’s Wednesday W

swelake2Like Evonne, I was having trouble coming up with a suitable topic for the Wednesday W feature and flicking through my dictionary didn’t produce any worthwhile results. (Couldn’t think of anything to say about “worthwhile” unfortunately). So I asked my daughter to suggest something. She said “water”.

fairybridge2At first I said no, I can’t write about that because Mandy already did a post about the sea, but then I thought – why not? There are lots of other types of water! Lakes, ponds, rivers and waterfalls. Moats too and, of course, rain!

waterfall3There’s something very soothing about water, just looking at it I mean. All the above are peaceful in their own ways and very often something you stop to stare at for a while. Is there anything more beautiful than a still lake at sunset? A river gently flowing under an old stone bridge? A little pond full of shiny koi fish? Or a waterfall, shimmering in the sunshine? They all calm the spirit. Even rain is wonderful, especially if you’re indoors, snug and warm, just listening to it or watching rivulets running down your windows.

ragmoat3I spent all my childhood summers in a little cottage by a lake, swimming almost every day no matter the temperature of the water. (Yes, I was and am a complete water baby.) I even swam when it was only 16 degrees Celsius (60 Fahrenheit), only emerging when my lips were turning blue and my teeth chattering so much I couldn’t speak. I just loved it! And when I wasn’t in the the water, I was on it, messing around in an old boat, learning how to row, trying fairly unsuccessfully to fish, or pretending my friends and I were pirates. I’m sure this all fed my imagination no end!

fish2Whenever I can, I go and sit by the waterfall in the Japanese Garden in London’s Holland Park. It gives me inspiration for writing and is a great reminder of the stark beauty and orderliness of Japan, which I often write about. The pond beneath the fall (or one like it) has featured in two of my books and it’s a wonderful place to just sit and think.

But my favourites are, of course, the Swedish lakes near where I grew up and although I don’t get to go there as often as I’d like, they stay in my memory so I only have to close my eyes and I’m there.

rain2How about you, what kind of water do you prefer and does it inspire you in any way?

22 thoughts on “Christina’s Wednesday W

  1. I can’t help thinking, Christina, of the Philosopher in James Stephens’ ‘The Crock of Gold,’ who (if memory serves, which it doesn’t very often) said something like this: ‘As a medium for floating boats, I will admit that water has its uses; but in a tin bowl water has a meagre and repulsive aspect…. We are washed on entering this world and upon leaving it and we derive no pleasure from the first washing nor benefit from the last… The antipathy of fish to water has long been remarked upon. Indeed, it has been noted that, removed from water, fish habitually expire in ecstasy at being relieved from their torment of prolonged washing.’

  2. I love lakes, especially with a mountain or two in the background. And the sea fascinates me. I’ve been mesmerised by the sight of a blue sea, with the glimmer of the sun shining on it – sheer beauty – and then been terrified by the angry grey waves of a Force 12. Forget gold, diamonds, oil etc. Isn’t water the most important thing on the planet?

  3. There’s something about water isn’t there? It’s the sound of running water that does it for me. NOT a dripping tap (the one in my kitchen is doing my head in) – but where it runs naturally. Rivers, gurling streams. Love em. We were lucky enough to stay in a cottage in Northumberland this year which was a former watermill and the sound of the river flowing past was wonderful. I find it soothes. Getting me into any water other than a bath however, is another thing:) Lovely post Pia X

  4. A lovely post, Pia. You certainly had a fab childhood. It’s really important writing those memories down and sharing them isn’t it? I feel it helps you to feel more grounded in the future if you have an anchor in the past. And Japan sounds fantastic, I know you have been. I’d love to visit one day.x

  5. Ha! Just seen you post, Sarah. We have a dripping tap in the kitchen too. SO annoying!!

  6. Beautiful photos, Christina! I love rain and waterfalls on Lakeland walks. Am even considering a water feature (not a dripping tap, though) for the garden …

  7. Fennie – LOL! Have never read that, but very much doubt the poor fish die of ecstasy 🙂

    Liv – yes, absolutely! Without water we’d be the planet Dune and although I loved those books, I wouldn’t want to live in a place like that.

    Sarah, running water gurgling is lovely, but dripping taps not so much, no 😀

  8. Mandy and Juliet – thank you! Yes, water features in gardens are wonderful, I’m planning one as well.

  9. Lovely photographs, Christina.

    I, too, love water and swimming – ideally not the water that comes out of the sky when you’ve just had your hair done, though, nor the water that falls heavily the moment you realise that there’s a hole in the sole of one of your boots.

    Liz X

  10. Liz, totally agree – I went out yesterday with perfect hair and came home looking like a wild thing! Not good …

  11. Growing up in Cornwall near the sea it has to be the coast for me. I now live in Tennessee with lots of beautiful lakes but it’s not the same thing as smelling salt in the air and hearing the waves. Roll on next week when I’ll be able to indulge myself back in Cornwall.

  12. I guess we all prefer what we’ve grown up with, Angela, which makes sense. For me it has to be the lakes rather than saltwater (although if it’s warm, blue and comes with a white beach I’m very happy to be near/in it as well 🙂 Didn’t realise there were lakes in Tennessee, but then my US geography is a bit hazy! Enjoy Cornwall, lovely place!

  13. I once read an article by someone whose name I now forget about her son doing a gap year. She was missing him terribly, then he wrote to say ‘Dived through a rainbow in front of a waterfall today, Mum’ I’ve never forgotten the image that conjured up.
    Great post ….and although I live by the sea, I think to walk along the banks of a river is one of the most peaceful things in the world – even when it’s in full spate.

  14. Sorry I’m late – we’ve had a little too much water falling from the sky for me this summer – your photos are lovely though, and I do love looking at the sea view from my house so it’s not all bad!

  15. I’m another water lover, and I’ll swim in anything – my children and I regularly swim in the rivers here, lakes, the sea, everywhere! Maybe it’s pre-birth memories – we’re all trying to get back to the security of the womb?

  16. Wow, diving through a rainbow – sounds fabulous, Linda!

    Chris, yes, we have had rather too much of a good thing this summer, haven’t we? But I still love it.

    Jane – could be, hadn’t though of it that way!

  17. For me it’s definitely the pull of the the sea. It can be both beautiful and terrifying, and completely beyond human control. And it’s so BIG!

  18. Pools and water falls – for some reason they conjure up Arthurian legends and Robin Hood. I think the latter may be the scenery from the Robin of Sherwood TV series – the one with Michael Praed, not the latest one. Strange tricks memory plays.

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