Watching nature take its course, from the top of a hill in northern England

The Colour Purple



I’ve not been well, some flu like virus sent me to bed yesterday, I slept most of the day. I dreamt that I was on a beach, the tide was lapping in, all over the beach their were little giraffes; they were purple and black in colour, they would have been about 18 inches tall, but I never saw one in its entirety, you see they were buried up to their necks in the sand when a wave came they shivered and pulled their necks back into the sand, so that just their eyes, ears and little horns stayed above the tide. I tried to take a photo for you, but I couldn’t get them in focus (no surprise really). Very strange.

As a child if I was ill I’d dream about being chased by bears; little purple and black giraffes shivering in the sand are less scary, I think. But please, don’t feed the last paragraph into a search engine, followed by the word, Freud. I don’t want to know.

Today I’ve felt a bit better but still pretty wiped out, I’ve watched TV footage of the Chilean miners rescue. More tissues required, its a special kind of maudlin that comes with the flu.

It got me thinking of all the mining that has taken place around here over the centuries lead, coal, salt, flourspar (non now alas, mining is an industry that has always swiftly followed the lowest price and highest return). Dangerous dirty work the working conditions of which I suspect are beyond the imagination of our generation.

Two  previous posts with a mining theme came to mind, the eerie Magpie Mine in Derbyshire


and a post about the town of Whitehaven


Thank you to Glo, for sending me this wonderful get well card, inspired by my dream (see it as it is meant to be on Glo’s site Porcelain Rose)

Author: uphilldowndale

Watching the rhythm of rural life, from the top of a hill in northern England. Having spent most of my life avoiding writing, I now need to do it! I am no domestic goddess, but if I were expecting visitors to my home, I would whisk round with the duster and plump up the cushions and generally make the place look presentable. I hope that by putting my words where others may see them it will encourage me to ‘tidy up and push the Hoover around’ my writing. On the other hand I may just be adding to the compost heap. Only time will tell! Pull up a chair, sit yourself down, I’ll put the kettle on.

18 thoughts on “The Colour Purple

  1. Hope you are feeling stronger and that the dreams are fading. I am disappointed, however, at not having photos of the giraffes.

  2. I made the trip back to the Magpie Mine OK, but the link to Whitehaven doesn’t work.

    Fever dreams are interesting things. I would send you a photo of my giraffes, but at the moment they’re over at the top of Bay View Hill being washed by wolves. Believe it or not, that makes sense.

    I’ve been thinking about Chilean miners, too. The thing I keep coming back to is that they worked out their own solutions, making their tiny community function to perfection. You’d think we could do more of that up on the surface, eh?

    • I’ve fixed the link Gerry; makes perfect sense to me, as did last nights dream images of a vicious pig and a rabbit that was growing new ears.
      I never read Alice in Wonderland as a kid (I didn’t read much of anything, in truth) but I listened to it on audio CD, during a long car journey the other week (read by Alan Bennett always a bonus) it seemed to capture the essence of dream world perfectly.

      As for the miners, have you read Victor Frankl’s book ‘Man’s Search for Meaning’ I think the answer is in there.
      An epic rescue, but will it lead to safer mines in the future

      (What were the chances of that Alan Bennett clip containing references to small giraffes, eh?)

  3. I hope you are feeling much better, UHDD ~ I have left you a get well card on my site 😉


    Agreeing that the watching and listening to the excitement of the Chilean miners returning to the surface to be back with their families is amazing and wonderful!

  4. Oh dear, I do hope that you’re feeling better! Glo’s get well card is wonderful and I’m sure it will make you smile. xx

  5. What a great card! I hope you are feeling better.

  6. Hope you’re back to full strength soon. When I’m ill, I always seem to dream my granny is there, singing to me in Gaelic. She died when I was five, but I can always see her face clearly. Which is weird but nice.

    I’ve been watching the Chilean miners come ‘back to grass’ with a smile on my face, coming as I do from a long line of coal miners in a now-idle pit village.

  7. What a visual person you are; even your dreams are arresting! I was walking along a beach today, looking out for tiny giraffes. I tend to dream much more in words. Hope you’re back up to scratch

  8. Hope you’re feeling better now, UHDD.

  9. I see that Mrs Thatcher also has flu at the moment.


  10. Thanks for posting the image and the link back to my site ~ I’m glad you enjoyed the poem and pictures. So true about laughter being the best medicine. I don’t think I’ll touch the vicious pig or the rabbit growing new ears, though ~ LOL. Wishing you sweet dreams tonight 🙂

  11. Sorry to hear you’ve been ill. Glad the giraffes came to visit you though. I find it interesting that you could only see parts of them in your dream. I’ve been thinking lately that so many good photographers only show parts of people, animals, flowers. Hoping you are soon all better!

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  13. I hadn’t seen Glo’s get well card until today – Wow! I am deeply impressed. I am sending links to two giraffe-obsessed friends.

    And I’ll look up the Frankl book, too. Sounds like the sort of thing I’d read in the winter. My brain works better at these temperatures.

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