Gunpowder plot

Bonfire by Hannah Foley. All rights reserved (

At the weekend we had a fire in the back garden for Bonfire Night. As regular readers will know I love Bonfire Night. While I can’t say I’ve got much sympathy with the Catholic vs Protestant gunpowder plot origins, I love the pre-gunpowder tradition of lighting fires at this time of year to ward off the harshness of the coming winter. We usually gather with my family at my parents’ house to light a fire and dance around their garden with sparklers as fireworks fill the night sky above us. Then there is the PTA firework display at school, full of oohs and aahs, burgers and hot dogs, surrounded by many dear friends. 

This year the latest lockdown meant it was just the five of us in our little garden. This summer we found a rusted chiminea (if you’re anything like me, you’ll have to look it up!) in the street, the bottom hanging off. Big Dreamer dragged it home, scrubbed it and rubbed it down, then sprayed it black. It was perfect for our bonfire this weekend, flames licking the top of the funnel when it really got going, much to Finch’s delight. We ate our baked potatoes, toasted our marshmallows and waved our sparklers, all the while thinking of our family and friends, sending them (and you too) sticky, sparkling love.

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