Miss W’s blog: Field work
In Ibiza, the winter months are a time for nesting; getting cosy in your home, spending hours on the computer in your pyjamas (whether you’re working from home or just lazy!), drinking red wine and making plans, lots of plans, a plethora of plans for the months ahead. And then springtime arrives with a bang and all of a sudden, you forget what your home and computer screen look like and plans have all gone out the window because all of a sudden, you’re out and about in a hustle of meetings and a flurry of social gatherings, morning, noon and night (and you’ve probably switched to beer by now too).
My job takes me all over the island and so at this busy time of year I’m often on the roads of Ibiza. North, south, east, west – each area has its own charm and I couldn’t pick a favourite (I’m a town girl, after all!). All of Ibiza’s roads bring new discoveries. And whether it’s a bumpy, dusty camino on the way to a villa or the smooth, long and wide new road all the way to San Juan I’m cruising along, one of the things I love most about being out in the field (so to speak), is well, being out in the fields!
At this time of year the island is in full bloom, with its multitude of fields creating a vibrant green landscape after finally receiving all the nourishment they’d needed, thanks to the last of the winter rains. And the weeds – have you ever seen anything so pretty in your life? Yes! I said WEEDS!
The wild winds of late have seen these gorgeous wild weeds pollinate all over the island’s fields and – while I do appreciate they’re not ideal for people with perfectly manicured villa gardens or farms growing crops – there’s just so much colour everywhere you look. Little yellow blossoms, purple buds and fresh white daisies are growing as tall as knee-height in the roadside fields between Ibiza and Santa Eulalia (and pretty much everywhere else across the island). There are teensy, tiny pretty little flowers popping in every colour of the rainbow, every which way you look.
Best of all (for me anyway) I’ve just started to see the beginnings of my absolute favourite flowers of all time, delicate red poppies, springing up through the blades of grass on the road towards Las Salinas. From the day you see the fields on either side of DC-10 completely awash with red poppies, you can pretty much set your clock to say it’s summer time (though if you want to get technical about it, yes, I know daylight savings was last weekend. That one hour less sleep is still haunting me).
‘They’ say it’s important to stop and smell the roses when life is busy, hectic or overwhelming (a familiar feeling to many in Ibiza in spring). But since wild roses aren’t dotted throughout our fields, I’ve come up with my own little take on the saying. I like to stop and pick some poppies. Combine little handfuls of red flowers with some daisies (they tend to grow wild together) and you’ve instantly got pretty little bundles to instantly brighten up your home. Hipsters may call this foraging. I call it field work.
NOTE: Let me save you some trouble: don’t stop and smell the poppies – they just smell like nothing.
You don’t need anything fancy to put them in – a mug, a glass, an (empty of course) wine bottle, a little vase… poppies look pretty no matter where they’re popping out from. Sadly, they don’t last long. A couple of days max. But that gives you all the more reason to just take five more minutes (sometimes two – it depends where you can precariously pull your car over on the side of the roads!) out of your busy life to just stop and appreciate nature? I mean – these are weeds!
With the sun on your face, and poppies in your hand (I probably should also warn you – the stems are kind of sticky), a sense of calm falls over you and puts everything into perspective. Don’t worry, you won’t doze off – a real poppy field isn’t like anything like Dorothy and co encountered in The Wizard of Oz. But you will, even just for a moment, feel totally and utterly relaxed… until the farmer who owns the field toots his tractor horn to tell you to move along!
Photography by Ana Lui