Saturday 29 March 2014

Bucolic Landscape

Something amazing happened yesterday. I went for a walk with my son to the nearby biotope. Last time we went there it was in the middle of the winter so now I hoped to show him the awakening of nature.

We left the village behind us. Then we took the path that goes uphill, with beautiful and peaceful scenery with many old wooden barns scattered along green undulating meadows. This is where my son started to slow down, complaining that he is too tired and that he would like to turn back. So I had to promise him that just around the corner there is a big surprise waiting for us. What I had in mind was all kind of animals, birds and all the newly sprouted vegetation. 

When we came to the biotope, it was not exactly the bucolic landscape what we saw. There were huge diggers everywhere, bare ground, ditches, huge piles of stones and something that made my heart beat faster. Clay! The diggers were spreading clay at the bottom of the future pond. I asked one of the workers if the clay comes from this biotope, but he told me that it was delivered from the nearby gravel quarry.

Until this exact moment it never crossed my mind to search for some local clay. Even though I was always secretly dreaming about it: Digging my own clay from the local river bank, purifying it from the branches and stones, letting it mature in a ditch and then one day make something beautiful with it. But, let’s be realistic: I am happy when I can find time to even work with clay in the first place. 

So I decided to take a sample of clay and test it in my next firing. If it is good enough, I will probably go to this gravel quarry and try to get some more. And I guess I will not be digging it by myself after all; I will let the machines do it for me.