My marvellous Kent Claret vine ... I bought it from Victoriana Nursery to keep my ever-faithful calendulas company. Friend Wendy recommends the grapes for grape jelly.

Happy harvesting … my Great Auntie Bee's watercolour of farming life as it used to be, painted in 1950.

The creative mind in action … Coppicing days, Pheasants Coppice, Bishopsbourne.

History …In the garden of Serre de la Madonne, Menton. Seems I wasn’t the only admirer.

Happy birthday! ... My 50th Birthday Party 9th September 2010 at Jenny's, also with Hilda, Becca, Vittorio, Robin and Yvonne and Bianca - Caprese Michelangelo, Toscana. A very special day.

Birthday girl ... Mrs G picking flowers on the morning of her 80th Birthday, a few seconds before she realised that I had arrived.

When Robert's poem, Abbaye St Wandrille de la Fontanelle, was first published, an admiring postcard from Kardamyli arrived in the mail: 'I was very moved by your charming short poem about St Wandrille ... it conjures up the magic of the place immediately.' It was signed Sir Patrick Leigh Fermor DSO OBE.

I left the poem for him at The Travellers Club, having enjoyed the trilogy of his walkabout of the late thirties and his later book about St Wandrille, A Time to Keep Silence. You can imagine how lovely it was to receive his two postcards.

Abbaye St Wandrille de la Fontanelle

At St Wandrille, in August rain,
Old, before the Normans came,
Where you can sense our infant isle,
In local stone and timbered tile,

And where you can feel eternity,
In vanished stone and forest tree.
At Saint Wandrille, in August rain,
Old, before the Normans came.

(The first Mass was said here in 649 AD; the Normans ruled here from 911AD.)

About Kardamyli
Fontenelle Abbey

Robert Graham's | Email | Wye, Ashford, Kent TN25 5DD | © 2000 - 2019