Saturday, 28 July 2012
How Green was my Lawn
The picture of my 'drying ground' was taken in front of our last house in Freshford. The grassy sloping area was used for drying all the household linens and the green helped to bleach it (with the help of the sun and the moon). I copied this ancient custom when I had to wash a huge roll of fine linen. After halving it to fit in my super large washing machine, Natasha, my grandaughter, and I spread it out and were just beginning to roll it back for ironing, when two important visitors arrived, and from the balcony above, shouted to us to leave it as they wanted to photograph the scene. They were two powerful magazine editors, one from Country Living and the other from Victoria, US home mag., ( a very happy article about my work appeared, it then folded. but is now back in publication).
The villages of Sharpstone and Freshford had been the original homes of Georgian washerwomen using our river Frome, and they washed the laundry sent from Bath where the waters were muddy and polluted; so of course, I was christened the 'Last Washerwoman of Freshford'.