A photo a day: August 17th

We went blackberry picking this morning in Camberwell Old Cemetery. The cemetery is a two minute walk from our house and worth a visit as about a third of it is fantastically overgrown, with winding little lanes overhung with trees and a huge amount of brambles.

camberwell old cemetery
Just the perfect spot for a walk with the pram. Ahem

There’s something really romantic about the old graves, just peeping out through the foliage. When I go, I’d like my grave to end up looking like this one:

grave and blackberries
I’d like the snail as well.

Before the blackberry picking in the overgrown lanes, we walked the upkept cement paths first, in an attempt to get the baby off to sleep. I read the inscriptions on the gravestones, noticing especially those who’d died young, or very old, or at the age I am now.

Then again, maybe I’d like a gravestone with a huge statue on…

It’s sobering and yet somehow wonderfully beautiful to see the remains of all those lives, boiled down to one little sentence on a gravestone. I always enjoy the ones that say “To my darling husband” or “To my much loved Mum”… There are huge achievements you could reach in life, of course, writing books, becoming famous, making crucial scientific discoveries. And yet I rather feel that to be remembered as someone’s “beloved mother” or “adored wife” is a pinnacle that can’t be topped.

After these introspective musings, baby well asleep, we set off into the undergrowth and were rewarded for our bravery. We foraged a good kilo of blackberries, returning home an hour later covered in scratches, a few bites and with our hands stained purple.

Weed seeds
I did my bit to help the spread of the local weed population

The plans for these little beauties are some blackberry and apple jam / jelly (it’s used like a jam, but sieved like a jelly) and either some blackberry and apple leather or something similar to that. I’ll show you some pictures tomorrow, if they end up looking appealing.

Trug of blackberries
It’s ridiculously hard to photograph the blackberries together with any definition. Why is that?

This post is a double whammy, joining in with the August break and also being part of my Making the most of London series.

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8 thoughts on “A photo a day: August 17th

  1. Yummy! we live near a forest and every autumn go to blackberries picking, it is amazing how many you can grab! I use to make smoothies with yoghurt, that means we finish them very quick!. It would be nice to make conserves this year.

  2. I agree, it is lovely to have a glimpse into the life of these old souls. I live surrounded by a Victorian graveyard, and everyday I wonder about their lives and their stories… and try not to dwell too much!
    That’s a fine haul of berries! They’re not quite ready over this way.

    1. There’ve been pickable ones for about a fortnight already over here. I notice that (our part) of London seems to be a good month before the rest of the country. Guess it’s the microclimate. All the apples on my trees are almost ready to fall as well… Makes you feel like the year is slipping away though!

  3. Old cemeteries are so evocative aren’t they, and extra points to you for finding luscious blackberries there too! Looks lovely, must investigate your London series. Thanks for linking up to #OurLondon

  4. What a marvellous blackberry haul … we usually pick ours in Brockwell park but will have to mooch down to Camberwell. Have heard West Norwood cemetry also very good source as well. Thanks so much for sharing at #OurLondon – Alice

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