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Helen Clark: Artist pays homage to Peak District Cows

Blog Posted on 04 Jul 2011

I was late for work opening my Gallery at Rowsley yesterday, It was Saturday, and no there usually aren’t many customers knocking the door down at 10 O’clock in the morning, which is when I open, but I hate being late – even though I’m my own boss and won’t get the sack - I hate being late.
I say “late” – it was 10 to ten when I was speeding through Baslow (I use that term as an adjective for blog purposes, Mr Policeman  -of course I wasn’t actually speeding, I was hurrying, very my a faster than normal pace, but obviously not over the speeding -  limit) and I would get there on time no worries, but I was a bit stressed.
The Hubster and I had had a night on the wine and a film the night before and we’d had a takeaway – the most expensive pizza we’d ever had actually. I’d taken my contact lenses out and when it was time to pay for the pizza, the Hubster had miraculously disappeared , as if by magic NOT like Mr Ben, and I had to pay for it. The Hubster is always accountantly prepared and sure enough there was a pile of money neatly stacked by the table near the front door. I scrambled around for the cash and ended up giving the pizza man all of it – my face as red as the previous night’s sunset.
I chuntered and chastised the Hubster when he miraculously appeared – this time JUST like Mr Ben, that he was a Tight Wad and that I could only give the pizza man a 30p tip. All hell broke loose then as it transpired I had inadvertently given the pizza man £10 too much –because I am a blind person and thought it was 2 fivers.  I said ”I am a blind person” to the Hubster and told him not to disappear at important occasions like when I have to pay for the pizza and that it was all his fault - obviously. That was the end of our cosy night in. We then spent the rest of the night not talking and watching the film in stony silence – and the pizza tasted awful cos every bite meant I’d been swizzed. Oh well such is life. I got thoroughly blottoed and now felt like death and I was late.
Back to my tale, I was late – did I mention?  I got to Chatsworth, swearing at the tractor driver in front for slowing me down, my head banging and in need of a cup of tea. I got past the tractor and then to Chatsworth and then, and THEN- everything was against me this morning, and then, what happened?
I had to stop. I was late and I had to stop.
I had to stop as there were blooming cows in the road. Blooming cows with no shop to open. Blooming cows who had no right to be stressing me even more with my lateness. Blooming cows who were in no hurry whatsoever and who just stood and looked around while they stopped me from getting to work...........aaaaaaaaaaaaaah. I thought my brain was going to seep out of my eyeballs at any minute I was so stressed.

I got out of the car, humphing and pumphing,  ready to shoo them on – and the sun was shining.....and it was so warm.......and the cows were beautiful.........their gorgeous long eyelashes blinking at me in the sunlight............and I looked around ..........I saw the sheep with their lambs happily munching the grass, the deer under the shade of the great canapy of oak...... Swifts swooped down to the ground and soared high into the sky that was as blue as a cornflower. I could see the moors above the house with little white dots mingled in the heather.
I looked back and several other cars had stopped and their occupants had got out too.  There wasn’t a sound. The cows carried strolling on, a huge line spreading back up the field but they were all going to cross. We were going nowhere, sometime soon.
It suddenly didn’t matter. 
I looked left and saw Chatsworth House. I saw the trees with all the colours of lush green, the fountain was on above the tree line, spraying mist delicately in the light breeze. I could see the steps with the water glinting on the Cascade.  The gorgeous, gorgeous old house was just sat there as it did yesterday and the day before and the day before that .......and I hadn’t seen it. I hadn’t even looked since I can’t remember. I’m so busy getting to where I have to go, ring any bells with you dear reader?
Life takes over and we just don’t see the Peak District. We work in it, we drive thought it, we get from A to B but when’s the last time you stopped and looked at where we are? How blooming lucky are we to live here or work here? How privileged are we to see Chatsworth house and it’s beautiful grounds, to drive through our stunning Peak District villages and picturesque hamlets, to cross our ancient Peak District bridges over crystal clean rivers? To see our beautiful wildife, our livestock and our gorgeous birds, every single day? 
And then I remembered I was late and drove through Beeley like a bat out of hell.....
But I remembered that moment all day - and it made me stop and smile
-despite a rather expensive hangover!


 This blog was brought to you by Helen Clark.




Type Of Art: painting
Location: caudwells Mill, Rowsley
Contact Number: 01629 732 638

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