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Columbia Road Market 64

December 19, 2010
by the gentle author

Each year at Christmas, my parents would drive over to Chard in Somerset to visit my grandmother for lunch on Christmas Day, and this blue Spode bowl always sat upon the sideboard in the dining room with blue Hyacinths sprouting in it, as a promise of the New Year and the Spring to come. Subsequently my mother inherited the bowl and it sat upon the dresser in Exeter, but now that all my living relatives are gone, it is here with me in Spitalfields and it is my lone responsibility to uphold the tradition by planting Hyacinths each year. Last year, I filled it with bulbs from Columbia Rd Market which, in a unique precedent in the history of this bowl and to my surprise, turned out to be bright pink. Although my grandmother would certainly not have approved, it was an exuberant break from the conservatism of tradition. But this year, the seller who sold me these six bulbs for £5 assured me they were blue – of the variety called “Blue Pearl”- so I shall now live in keen expectation of the New Year to discover what appears in 2011.

The Hyacinths of 2010.

I awoke to this view from my bedroom window in Spitalfields yesterday.

2 Responses leave one →
  1. December 20, 2010

    Snow and hyacinths, winter and spring, in a single entry. It is that time of year when we look both back and forward, trying to sort out what kind of year has passed and what might be in store. Wishing you all the best in 2011, Gentle Author.

  2. Lucy permalink
    December 21, 2010

    I always find hyacinths at Christmas refreshing, an injection of spring into the wintry decorations.

    It would be strange if they were pink again. That would seem like happenstance was carving out a new tradition!

    My mother inherited a table recently which is joining her after a journey through the family tree. Recently it belonged to a cousin and his wife who have sadly now both died, before that to my great aunt, and before that we think to her mother, who lived in the farmhouse where my mother grew up. Now it has a new incarnation and it looks beautiful with cards, candles and Christmas greenery on.

    I love these objects that stay with us.

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