Oh spring, how happy we are to see you.
No-one can deny or underestimate the intensity of feelings brought on by the arrival of you, the finest season ever invented.
Spring has everything you could seasonally desire - more light than darkness, the faintest hints of warmer temperatures, blue and yellow replacing grey and black, the teeny tiny shoots of nature's newborn flora...including the greatest ethereal show on earth - blossom...or sakura if you're in Japan.
Spring brings a collective sigh each year that there is hope; that it's okay to feel optimistic; that all the maladies of winter are over and we can now pick ourselves up, dust off and get onto more important matters.
Living in the countryside, as we do, the seasons feel conspicuous. They have a brazen attitude; an honesty and aloofness that I admire, and after 12 years of living rurally since our departure from London, I'm now used to their smugness, and feel so close to mother-nature as the seasons arrogantly go about their business.
Let's be honest, dog walking is challenging when it's rained every day for two weeks and your day revolves around which dog clothing is going to best protect each of our three dogs (The Hyde and Kensington for wet days, as you asked, and The Burlington or Richmond if it's freezing).
Wiping muddy paws around six times a day x 3, or bathing them when they are too caked in mud, washing and drying dog towels and dog beds, and trying to fit dog walks into ridiculously short days is all-consuming. But, you know...first world problems and all that, and of course we wouldn't have it any other way.
I bought these towelling dog coat things from Ruff and Tumble at Discover Dogs which are pretty good. They kind of resemble a medieval horse costume, but I find they are good after a wet walk. I take their coats off, put the towelling coats on and they remove the worst of the muck whilst the dogs are in the back of the car, until we get home.
Talking of outfits which best suit particular occasions, I finally made it to the Dior Exhibition at the V&A. It's called 'Christian Dior: Designer Of Dreams' and I can report back that it is totally dreamy.
I think it's fair to say that, apart from a bespoke gown that my very talented friend and wedding dress designer extraordinaire, Jacqueline Byrne, made me for a special party, and the frocks my mother used to run up for my sister and I from scraps found in the local thrift shops, I'm not really the couture gown target market, but a visit to this exhibition totally fulfils every girl's fashion fantasy.
A little fetching aztec-inspired number that my mother made exclusively for me.
They have extended the run until September 1st, due to its popularity, so if you can get yourself a ticket (sold out on the website, but tickets available every morning from 10am on the door) I highly recommend it for a few immersive hours of total escapism.
This month I have mostly been watching 'Beautiful Boy' the 2018 biographical film directed by Felix Van Groeningen.
The story is based on the memoirs by David Sheff, Beautiful Boy: A Father's Journey Through His Son's Addiction (originally a piece he wrote for The New York Times Magazine) and his son Nic's book, Tweak: Growing up on Methamphetamines which describe how their family dealt with Nic's methamphetamine addiction and how it's almost impossible to try and help someone so close to you who is affected by the disease known as addiction.
As the mother of a teenage son this film felt incredibly important to watch with my 14-year old, even though it has graphic drug use scenes. It seems that love is always the answer when addiction rampages its way through a family, when you just don't know what fate may have in store for you.
Steve Carell and Timothée Chalamet give the performances of their lives and, in my humble opinion, it's a far more appropriate choice for the 'Best Film' Academy Award.
On a lighter note, I thoroughly enjoyed the Quincy Jones documentary on Netflix.
My dad introduced me to the genius of this man many years ago (thanks dad), so I feel like I've grown up around his music, but I don't think I realised quite how brilliantly accomplished he was as a musician, and quite how far his reach went to influence almost every genre and artist of the music business. Take a look if you have the chance.
Quincy says 'You only live 26,000 days. I'm going to wear them all out.'
Amen to that.