Snowdrops

We Bookfayries are galanthophile. We love snowdrops.
We couldn’t imagine how these fine plants drill through snow and ice. As drilling makes a sound, we decided to lie down on Dina’s insolation mat and listen. We were as quiet as possible. And you wouldn’t believe it, we heard not only this fine squeaking sound but also laughing. Two of the snowdrops around us couldn’t stop laughing. They whispered that we have to activate our antifreeze when we are trembling because of that cold. They couldn’t understand that poor Bookfayries aren’t able to do this. They decided to change the subject and spoke about what to do when it’s warmer. Nothing, we thought. Absolutely wrong! “If the temperature rises above 10 degrees C, we are happy to open our outer petals to give easy access to our nectar”, they explained. We understood they open the door to their pantry for the hungry bees after hibernation. For bees, 10 degrees is a wake-up call.

Wir Buchfeen sind galanthophil. Wir lieben Schneeglöckchen. Gar nicht konnten wir uns vorstellen, wie sie sich durch Schnee und Eis ans Licht bohren. Da Bohren ein Geräusch macht, legten wir uns auf Dinas Isolierplane, wie sie es bei Makro-Aufnahmen macht, und wagten kaum zu atmen. Ganz still horchten wir. Da hörten wir nicht nur dieses quietschende Bohrgeräusch, sondern auch lautes Lachen. Zwei Schneeglöckchen lachten sich fast schief, wie wir so vor Kälte zitterten. Sie raunten uns zu, dass man doch bei Kälte ein Frostschutzmittel aktivieren muss um zu überleben. Dass Feen das nicht können, war ihnen völlig unverständlich. So sprachen wir lieber, was zu tun ist, wenn es warm wird. Eigentlich nichts, dachten wir, doch weit gefehlt, “steigt die Temperatur über über 10 Grad C, öffnen wir die äußeren Blüttenblätter, um den Zugang zum Nektar freizugeben”, erklärten sie uns. Also sie öffnen die Tür zu ihrer Speisekammer, verstanden wir, damit die hungrigen Bienchen nach ihrem Winterschlaf sich bedienen können. Für die wirkt nämlich 10 Grad wie ein Wecker.

Can you hear them grow?

Back in our house, we fetched our Master’s old Dictionary of Symbols from the loft, dusty and totally weaved in with spider nets. We read that snowdrops symbolise purity and overcoming the cold, as well as comfort and hope. That’s obvious, we could have written this as well. But we didn’t know that the English writer Walter de la Mare – we had never heard of him and suspect that our Master had tracked him down in one of his clever books – did connect the snowdrops with the holy spirit like all Christians use to take up every white object and being.

Wieder im Haus holten wir Masterchens altes Symbollexikon vom Speicher, das völlig spinnig war, wir meinen, eingesponnen, anderes würden wir uns nie zu sagen wagen. Wir lasen, dass unsere Schneeglöckchen Reinheit und Überwindung der Kälte symbolisieren, auch Trost und Hoffnung. Das wäre uns auch eingefallen. Wir wussten jedoch nicht, dass der englische Dichter Walter de la Mare, von den wir nie zuvor gehört hatten, und den Masterchen sicher auch nur in einem seiner klugen Bücher aufgestöbert hatte, also dass dieser Dichter die Schneeglöckchen mit der christlichen Trinität verband wie überhaupt die Christen alles Weiße für sich in Anspruch nehmen.

Our not quite so holy Siri Snowdrop 😉

We are sure you don’t know where the name snowdrop comes from. We clever Bookfayries know. From the 15th to the 17th c., women loved white earrings formed like drops which were called ‘eardrops’. – Comment for Dina and Master: Such earrings we would like for our next birthdays. – As those eardrops looked like the snowdrops they gave them their name. You surely know dear children have many names as do the snowdrops too. They are also called White Winter Women, Little Snow Sisters, Flowers of Hope and Flower of Death. We like the name ‘Milkflower of the Snow’ (Galatheus nivalis) how Carl Linnaeus called them.

Woher der Name Schneeglöckchen stammt, wisst ihr bestimmt nicht. Wir aber! Vom 15. bis hin ins 17. Jahrhundert liebten Frauen weiße tropfenförmige Ohrgehänge, die ‘Ohrtropfen’ oder ‘Ohrglöckchen’ genannt wurden. – Anmerkung für Masterchen und Dina: Solche Ohrringe wünschen wir uns zu unserem Geburtstag. – Da nun die Schneeglöckchen ähnlich aussehen, kamen sie zu ihrem Namen. Aber ihr wisst ja, liebe Kinder haben viele Namen, so auch unsere Schneeglöckchen, die auch Weiße Winter Frauen, Kleine Schneeschwestern, Hoffnungs- aber auch Todesblume genannt werden. Toll finden wir übrigens den Namen ‘Milchblumen des Schnees’ (Galatheus nivalis), den Carl Linnaeus unseren Schneeglöckchen gab.

An exquisite Snowpearl with a second pearl in tow

The name ‘Flower of Death’ really annoyed our dear snowdrops. We explained that they are poisonous like their yellow sisters the aconites. We had to explain what poisonous means. Our clever snowdrops understood instantly. They argued with bowed heads that what’s poison is a matter of the doses as already Paracelsus found out in the 16th c. “We provide Galamentine for the humans, a substance helping people with Alzheimer disease”, they made their point. The Victorians didn’t know this and believed the snowdrops are messengers of death especially when brought inside the house. But with such old tales, we would not argue with our snowdrops. They are happy that snowdrop-gardens are very much liked by the English where they flower in peaceful harmony next to the dear friends the yellow aconites.

Über den Namen Todesblume waren unsere Schneeglöckchen echt sauer. Wir erklärten ihnen, dass der daher stammt, dass sie wie ihre gelben Schwestern, die Winterlinge (gelber Aconitum), giftig sind. Was giftig ist, mussten wir ihnen allerdings erst erklären. Unsere Schneeglöckchen verstanden schnell. Sie argumentierten, wenn auch mit gesenkten Köpfchen, dass es bei Giften auf die Dosis ankommt, wie bereits Paracelsus feststellte. “Und außerdem” trumpften sie auf, ” bieten wir den Menschen Galamantine, eine Substanz die die Alzheimer Erkrankung erträglicher macht.” Das war jedoch den Viktorianern nicht bekannt, die Schneeglöckchen in ihrem Volksglauben als Todesboten fürchteten, die man auf keinen Fall ins Haus bringen durfte. Aber mit solch alten Kram wollten wir unseren Freunden nicht kommen. Sie freuen sich, dass Schneeglöckchengärten in England äußerst beliebt sind und sie dort in friedlicher Harmonie mit ihren Freunden, den gelben Winterling, als Erste im Jahr wuchern dürfen.

Don’t even think about digging up snowdrop-bulbs. Our dear white friends hate that and by the way, it’s forbidden by law in most countries. Although you can find thousands of snowdrops in light woods they are endangered. Too many people dug them up for selling them in former times. The snowdrop-lobby achieved in 1995 that trading their bulbs is forbidden unless one got a license.

Übrigens, lasst euch bloß nicht einfallen, Schneeglöckchenzwiebeln in der Natur auszugraben. Das ist voll blöd und in den meisten Ländern verboten. Obwohl sie speziell in leichtem Wald zu tausenden vorkommen, sind die Armen gefährdet, denn zu viele haben in früheren Jahren Schneeglöckchenzwiebeln ausgegraben. “Wir sind gegen jegliche Verpflanzung!”, protestierte die Schneeglöckchenlobby. Seit 1995 ist zum Glück der Handel mit Schneeglöckchenzwiebeln verboten bzw. lizensiert.

Our snowdrops told us that they aren’t native to the British Isles. They weren’t mentioned as an English wildflower before the end of the 16th c. Very proudly they told us that there exists even a Galanthomania like the Dutch tulipmania. In 2015 a bulb of their grandmother “Golden Fleece” was auctioned for £ 1390 and other bulbs are worth a fortune too. In this respect the aconites are better off, they aren’t endangered. “But they don’t get that much attention!” says smiling a narcissistic snowdrop in her brilliant white dress.

Sie erzählten uns noch, dass sie gar nicht nicht heimisch in unserem Garten und auf den Britischen Inseln sind. Man bemerkte sie erst Ende des 16. Jahrhunderts als Wildblume in England. Voller Stolz erzählten sie uns, dass wie beim holländischen Tulpenfieber es eine Galanthomanie gibt. So wurde z.B. die Schneeglöckchenzwiebel ihrer Großmutter ‘Golden Fleece’ 2015 für £ 1390 ersteigert, andere liegen gut bewacht in bestimmten Räumen. Da hat es der Winterling besser, der nicht gefährdet ist. “Er bekommt aber nicht so viel Beachtung!” meint ein narzisstisches Schneeglöckchen strahlend in seinem weißen Kleid.

The also not so holy Selma Aconite.

Wishing you a happy late winter. Enjoy the snowdrops
Wir wünschen euch allen einen angenehmen Spätwinter. Viel Freude an den Schneeglöckchen
Siri 🙂 and 🙂 Selma

© Text and illustrations, Hanne Siebers and Klausbernd Vollmar, Cley next the Sea, 2021

188 thoughts

  1. Oh ja, mehr und mehr davon schrauben sich durch die nasse Gartenerde nach oben, freiwillig in Regen, Aprilwetter, Sturm mit sonnigen Abschnitten! Schön, diese feinen Gedanken und Recherchen dazu zu lesen!
    Gruß von Sonja

    Liked by 4 people

    • Guten Tag, liebe Sonja,
      in unserem Garten scheinen sie eine Versammlung abzuhalten mit ihren Freunden den gelben Aconitums. Trotz Corona wahren sie ganz und gar keinen Abstand. Als Giftlinge brauchen sie das auch nicht.
      Hab ganz lieben Dank für deinen Kommentar.
      Halte dich wacker.
      Alles Liebe
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Carissimi, ich geniesse eure interessanten und vielseitigen Geschichten zum Schneeglöcklein, das sich bei uns im Garten dieses Jahr noch nicht hat sehen lassen, aber diese schönen zarten Blümchen lassen sich halt noch Zeit! Von der Galamantine habe ich bisher noch nie gehört und hoffe doch sehr, dass ich sie nie brauchen werde:) Lieben Gruss Martina

    Liked by 4 people

    • Liebe Martina,
      uns erzählten Siri 🙂 und 🙂 Selma ganz im Vertrauen, dass sie sich erst etwas später zu dir auf den Weg machen werden. Wegen Corona dauert eben alles etwas länger. Aber sie sind sich sicher, bald bei dir erscheinen zu können.
      Wir hatten auch nie zuvor von Galamantine gehört, das bei jeder Demenz helfen soll, und hoffen, dass wir alle das nicht gebrauchen. Selma 🙂 meint, Schneeglöckchen anzuschauen würde schon wie ein homöopathisches Schneeglöckchen-Globuli wirken. Allerdings Siri 🙂 ist nicht so ganz davon überzeugt.
      Mit ganz lieben Grüßen
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 3 people

    • Das ist aber super, lieber Klausbernd, und schon jetzt herzlichen Dank! Vielleicht kannst du Selma und Siri sagen, dass wir im Garten bereits 2 Bienenstöcke aufgestellt haben und dass es hier viel Platz für die Schneeglöcklein gibt, sodass sie prächtig gedeihen können.
      Etwas Gutes zu glauben hat schon manch einem wirklich geholfen!
      Lieben Gruss an das ganze Team:):):):)

      Liked by 2 people

    • Liebe Martina,
      habe alles Siri 🙂 und 🙂 Selma gesagt. Sie werden das morgen früh ihren Freundinnen, den Schneeglöckchen, weitersagen.
      Hab Dank und ganz liebe Grüße von uns allen
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Like

  3. The snowdrops appeared over on Beetley Meadows last week. Always a welcome addition to my daily walks with Ollie. Dina’s photos are lovely of course, and a perfect accompaniment to the interestng history of those lovely bulbs.
    Love from Beetley, Pete and Ollie. X

    Liked by 3 people

    • Dear Pete,
      well, the snowdrops are close friends of Siri 🙂 and 🙂 Selma and they told Hanne-Dina how they wanted to be photographed.
      Thanks for commenting.
      With love ❤ from the coast to Beetley
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks a lot, dear Jet,
      we love our snowdrops. That seems to help, more and more are gathering together on our front lawn. They want to have their chats with Siri 🙂 and 🙂 Selma.
      Stay well
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

    • Dear Eddie,
      thank you so much for your kind comment.
      It was fun writing this snowdrop-post and choosing the ‘right’ pictures for it. Well, the snowdrops helped us with clever advice.
      With love from the little village next to the big sea
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 3 people

  4. I fear I shall have to be content with YOUR snowdrops, Fab 4, because we do not have them here in the southern US. They are quite beautiful, delicate and definitely aptly named. Loved your artwork on this one – nice to see Siri and Selma in person (or would that be fairy-son!

    Liked by 6 people

    • Guten Abend, liebe Erika,
      habe herzlichen Dank für deinen lieben Kommentar. Toll, dass dir unsere Post gefällt.
      Mit lieben Grüßen vom kleinen Dorf am großen Meer
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Anneli,
      hard to imagine that such delicate and fine flowers make it through ice and snow and can stand quite some frost.
      Wishing you all the best
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  5. That was a really interessting read. I Germany we have loads of snowdrops in the garden and even more “WInterlinge” . My mum loved them so much and they spread really fast – under the roses. The pictures a re fantastic, your drawings too. Enjoy those lovely delicate flowers in Norfolk.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Dear Ute,
      at ours, you find them around the rose bushes and old trees as well as in the shadow of the house. When we moved here about 30 years ago we only had one little patch with about 5 snowdrops. Now they are all over. Siri 🙂 and 🙂 Selma think that’s because of talking to them.
      Thanks for commenting.
      With love from Norfolk to London
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  6. A beautiful post and my heart is full of joy with the beauty of the snowdrop photos! 😀 As soon as I spy them in the garden, out and about I feel reassured it is not too long until Spring! They are so delicate, yet hardy … it has been wonderful to learn about them, the beliefs surrounding them and it is great they are protected by law! I bet it’s been fun researching the old books for information! 😀 Thank you for an uplifting and positive end to my day! Wishing you all well in Cley!

    Liked by 4 people

    • Thank you, dear Annika 🙏 🙏 You are so kind! It was fun, indeed, searching in the old books of our library. We found a lot in a Swiss Encyclopedia of Prejudices (24 Vol.) but we could only bring a tiny bit of our finds here. Hans Christian Andersen wrote a story called “Schneeglöckchen” what mean snowdrops in English.
      Wishing you all the best.
      Keep healthy and happy
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  7. Bis zu den ersten Schneeglöckchen dauert es hier noch ein bisschen, aber ihr schürt die Vorfreude! Und Winterlinge habe ich hier noch nie gesehen, ich werde noch aufmerksamer schauen.
    Zauberhafte Makroaufnahmen, liebe Hanne, sind dir gelungen und das liebe Masterchen hat wieder so flüssig kostbares Wissen erzählt, untermalt von dem glöckchenfeinen Lachen der Feen 🙂
    Herzlichen Dank und liebe Grüße an euch Vier,
    Ulli

    Liked by 4 people

    • Danke, liebe Ulli, für deinen lieben Kommentar, der uns lachen machte.
      Die Pflanzenfotografie ist nun Dina’s neues Feld, nachdem die Robben gegangen sind.
      Mit ganz lieben Dank von uns allen und bleibe schön gesund.
      Übrigens Masterchen wird übermorgen geimpft, dann ist hier jeder im Dorf geimpft außer Siri 🙂 und 🙂 Selma, die das nicht benötigen, denn Buchfeen bekommen kein Corona und geben es auch nicht weiter.
      Liebe Grüße
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Liebe Siri und Selma,
    eine ganz wunderbar lehrreiche und fantastisch “verpackte” Geschichte, die Ihr da erzaehlt. Gefaellt mir ganz ausgezeichnet – ebenso wie die Zeichnungen, und natuerlich auch die Fotos.
    Liebe Gruesse und macht’s gut, Ihr Alle,
    Pit

    Liked by 2 people

    • Lieber Pit,
      Siri 🙂 und 🙂 Selma lassen dich gaaaanz liebe grüßen und senden dir ihren feinsten güldenen Feenstaub. Sie sind gerade sehr busy, busy, denn sie wollen hier im Spätsommer ein Buchfest veranstalten. Huch, da gab’s bereits Zoom-Meetings und heute wurde eine Vorbereitungsgruppe gebildet.
      Habe herzlichen Dank für deinen sooo lieben Kommentar, über den wir uns alle sehr gefreut haben.
      Mit herzallerliebsten Grüßen vom sonnigen Meer
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Ich bewundere ja Linnaeus, den schwedischen Linnè. Solche Systematiken liebe ich. Ich habe mich seit meinem Studium für Ordnungsprinzipien interessiert. Linnè entwickelte sozusagen die Grammatik der Natur.
      Liebe Grüße vom sonnigen Meer
      Klausbernd
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Wonderful! I think it is still too early for me to listen to the snowdrops arriving. We are still in snow and ice here. But let me tell you about the laughing stones of the arctic. A friend of mine went to the arctic to meet with her daughter in law’s family who are Inuit. My friend kept collecting stones here and there. Finally she was asked :”Why car you collecting those stones?” She replied:” I am going to put them in my garden in Toronto. ” The person who asked laughed and said:” Oh you can’t do that. those stones will just laugh at you, all the time, if you do that. ” My friend put the stones down and left them where they belonged.

    Liked by 3 people

  10. Hi, The photographs and sketches are such a treat to see. I enjoy learning about snowdrops, so thanks for all the teaching as well. In Pennsylvania, the state flower is the mountain laurel. There is a law against taking the flowers or parts of the plants or the plants themselves, so I can appreciate legislation to protect snowdrops. They are precious and inspiring, and I hope the right earrings show up. Thanks again. I hope all are safe and healthy.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Thank you very much for commenting. We are happy that you like our post. It was fun doing the research and writing it.
      Now Dina and I are on the hunt for two pairs of those white earrings. Not that easy during the lockdown.
      We are well and I get my vaccination tomorrow. Nearly everyone in our village got vaccinated then. Well, not Siri 🙂 and 🙂 Selma as Bookfayries can’t catch Corona.
      Wishing you all the best. Stay healthy and happy
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Janet,
      well, snowdrops need snow otherwise they are drops only 😉 We nearly always lived in countries with real winters. There you find snowdrops in most of the places in half shade.
      We love them. We have lots in our garden now and are so happy that they spread very well.
      Thanks for commenting.
      Stay healthy
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  11. Oh meine Guete, ich hatte keine Ahnung ueber die Geschichte der Schneegloeckchen , das ist wunderbar was ich hier lerne durch Eure Worte und Dina’s amazing images. Als Kind erinnere ich mich dass diese immer die ersten Vorboten im Fruehling waren und wir immer so total in Freude waren sie in Spaziergaengen zu entdecken. Sorry I’m writing English and German, da ich ja hier in den USA lebe, ich habe viele Kindheitserinnerungen an Schneegloeckchen , leider gibt es diese nicht hier wo ich lebe, but I mostly enjoyed your marvelous post, thank you for sharing it. Liebste Gruesse an Euch von Cornelia

    Liked by 2 people

    • Ganz herzlichen Dank, dear Cornelia. Well, we quite often talk and even write in einer Mischung von English and German, Denglisch eben. Und dann mischt sich noch a little bit of Norwegian mit ein, dass dann die Würze gibt.
      Als Kinder waren wir auch ganz verrückt nach Snowdrops. Wir waren stets so traurig that snow was melting and so we projected all our love auf die Schneeglöckchen. Es gab da auch kleine Aufführungen in Kindergarten und Schule, wo wir like Siri 🙂 verkleidet als Schneeglöckchen gingen.
      Mit ganz lieben Grüßen from the sunny coast of North Norfolk
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Danke dir dear Klausbernd, for your wonderful response, I remember as a child loving to lick the snow, oh it was such a wonderful feeling on the tongue. But back than our parents would tell us that we would get sick by doing that. Ja liebe Gruesse von der im Moment sonnigen Kueste from California. Heute habe ich auf einem Spaziergang in einem Hafen die Seehunde/ Seeloewen gehoert, it was a loud beautiful conversation between the “family”, which embark here in the harbor. Liebe Gruesse an euch from Cornelia

      Liked by 2 people

    • Das ist witzig, dear Cornelia, my parents always told me “Don’t lick snow!” as well – but I did – and Charly Brown said “Don’t eat yellow snow!” 😉
      Wir warten hier sehnsüchtigst auf Schnee, it’s forecasted. But today we had it warm and sunshine all day long. Zumindest zu dieser Jahreszeit finden we das voll boring.
      Ja, die Seehunde und Seelöwen quatschen immer. They are communicative beings.
      Ganz liebe Grüße von uns
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂
      We really love writing Denglisch.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Liebe Cornelia,
      wishing seems to work 🙂 🙂 there are 20cm of snow (actually only a bit more than nothing – aber immerhin) forecasted. Now we are planning some photo-excursions.
      Dein Hoffen hat gewirkt – well, Blochs Prinzip Hoffnung 😉
      Ganz liebe Grüße
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Like

  12. Fascinating! I recently read something about snowdrops in Nancy Campbell’s excellent book: Fifty Words for Snow. At least 11 of the world’s 20 or so snowdrop species are found in Turkey (the country where tulips also originated).

    Liked by 3 people

    • Dear Laurence,
      thank you very much for mentioning Nancy Campbell’s book “Fifty Words for Snow”. Wasn’t that the discussion about Benjamin Lee Whorf’s book? My professor in linguistics wrote one of the many critiques of Whorf’s concept of the connection between language and thinking. Unfortunately, we didn’t know about Campbell’s book. We read an also excellent book about snow, Whittell, Giles: Snow – A Scientific and Cultural Exploration.
      Snowdrops in Turkey – I suppose in the mountains there where it gets cold and you have quite some snow.
      Stay healthy and happy. By the way, I am getting my vaccination tomorrow. Nearly all our neighbours are vaccinated then.
      All the best
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

    • I’m afraid I do not know Benjamin Lee Whorf’s work but a quick Google suggests how interesting it might be to find out more. Jackie has had her first jab – I am too young, alas – although my mother, 93, who lives in Suffolk is still waiting (she is in hospital with fractured knee and cannot get vaccination until she returns home). All best from about to become snowy Norwich.

      Liked by 1 person

    • There was a big discussion of liguists all over the world about the many words for snow. It soon became popular outside university circles, at least on the continent, in the 70th and beginning of the eighties. You find his ideas still discussed in modern literature about philosophy of language. The basic question is can we think beyond our language. Wittgenstein said we can’t, Cassirer wrote about it as well. The problem was that Whorf’s ideas were quite undifferentiated, not making a difference between language and words. Cut it short: if we don’t have a word for something it doesn’t mean we don’t know this concept. We might express it in a sentence or many words. F.e. if in Inuktitut there is one word for wet snow on which we can hardly ski; we can express this in many words (as I did here).
      Anyway, Whorf was very influencal because his ideas were very simple and his book an easy read.
      We are very much looking forward for the snow to come. We planned quite some photo-excursions. Hanne likes to photograph snowy nature and I like driving on snow.
      Keep warm and healthy
      Klausbernd 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for the summary Klausbernd. I understand the linguistic argument and knew of Wittgenstein but not Whorf. Do you really like driving on snow? It terrifies me – there again I do not have a great deal of experience of it in normally temperate UK.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Laurence,
      I really like to drive on snow and ice. The time I lived in Finnland it was a kind of winter enjoyment to drive on the lakes. You build a course with little snow walls, then you tried to drive it as fast as possible. It didn’t matter if you failed to go around a corner you just went through a little snow wall. But I already had a little practise driving on snow as I lived partly in Sweden and in a mountainous area in Germany when I was young and learned to drive. Later in Canada, I drove on snow as well. You just made me aware of it that I have quite some practice with driving on snow. Before I moved to England I nearly always lived in countries with real winters where driving on snow was normal, nobody saw this as something special. And now with 4-wheel-drive no problem at all. I suppose it is a psychological problem English people have with snow. You are not relaxed with a little bit of snow, you are rather afraid of it. If you look at English literature your connotation of snow is rather negative. In a way, it’s funny because what is rare is usually seen as positive, as something desirable.
      Anyway, it would be a topic for another post how snow and cold are seen in different cultures. And coming back to winter driving, it’s just a question of experience producing confidence.
      We just came back from a great walk at the beach with little snowstorms and very high waves.
      Enjoy the snow 🙂
      Keep warm and healthy
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • You are probably right that the English are a little afraid of snow. We do not have enough it regularly for us to get used to it. Also, just a light dusting and the whole infrastructure seems to break down. Today, although the post came, we did not get our usual milk delivery. Driving though, I am as afraid of other drivers as I am of my own lack of skill. Our roads are narrow and crowded too. all a bit academic really as for the time being we are not really driving anywhere. Anyway, enjoy your snow on the coast – it looks lovely here on the Norwich rooftops. All best. Laurence

      Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Laurence,
      it’s really great here. We have been outside all morning and soon we’ll be out again. Dina is soooo happy taking lots and lots of photos. Tomorrow she will go out to the Blakeney Point taking pictures of the Point in snow.
      We can imaging that it looks romantic seeing the rooftops full of snow. We heard that you actually have more snow in Norwich than we have here at our part of the coast. It’s very different here as well, Cromer has more snow than we have but Blakeney has less.
      Anyway, we enjoy the snow we have.
      Keep well and warm
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much, dear Nehal 🙏 🙏 We are happy that you like our post 🙂
      You are from India or Nepal we suppose. We are wondering if you have snowdrops in your country as well?
      Wishing you a wonderful day as well. Keep well
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  13. My dear friends,
    this post is GREAT, it’s so you!
    Siri 🙂 and 🙂 Selma are really gifted. Here comes an invitation to my writer’s class. They will love it and my students and especially I as well. They could live in my house with me or in my friend’s apartment in romantic gamla stan (she’s just teaching abroad). What do you think about it? Isn’t it better than your Fairy School?
    Sending you all lots of love
    Annalena

    Liked by 3 people

    • Dearest Annalena,
      we are sooo happy that you like our post – and about Siri’s 🙂 and 🙂 Selma’s invitation to Stockholm. Well, it will take a while until we can travel again – but not the fairies, we know. We’ll ask them if they like to go. But we will miss them! We’ll think about it. So kind of you. We’ll phone you tonight. Do you have zoom-meetings with your students right now? If you do, Siri 🙂 and 🙂 Selma could zoom in from here. We, Hanne-Dina and me are a little bit tired of all these zoom-meetings. Actually, we enjoy it not having to communicate all the time – not with you, if course. We would love to visit you in Stockholm as soon as we are allowed to travel again.
      By the way, I get my first vaccination tomorrow and the second on May 1st. I am quite happy about it. What about you?
      With lots of love from all of us
      Keep well, healthy and happy
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Hi, you all,
    my dear friends, I really like your presentation of the snowdrops. It’s so charming. Well done!
    I just read “Eingefroren im Eis” by Markus Rex. What a great book, actually the log of the biggest polar expedition of all times. I am sure, Klausbernd will love reading it.
    It’s quite mild here in Longyearbyen just around – 10 C, a nice temperature for cross country skiing.
    With lots of love to all of you and to Annalena as well
    Per Magnus 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

    • My dear friend Per Magnus,
      what a coincident! I just read “Eingefroren am Nordpol” as well – I am on page 233 right now. Really a great book. I would have liked to be on this expedition as well. On the other hand, it’s frightening to be on the ground that is permanent moving and changing and all this in the dark.
      Thanks for liking the post of our beloved Bookfayries. They are just busy – no idea with what …
      Lots of love, keep well
      Klausbernd and the rest of the gang
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Dear Siri and Selma! I was enchanted by your discussions with the snowdrops and heard the laughter. Is that possible? It is unbelievable to me that snowdrop laughter can cross the ocean to Vancouver. Maybe it is the snowdrops on my side of the world that are joining in the laughter. How wonderful that your Master captured you both talking to the snowdrops. And Dina’s photos are magnificent, as always. There is a mystical energy that comes through. I have heard that there is an ancient German tale, that when the earth was new, Snow wanted to borrow a colour. It seems that Snow went to each of the flowers, but they would not give up their colour for they wanted their colour for themselves. The delicate Snowdrop saw that the Snow was very sad and kindly offered up their colour to Snow. Snow was very happy indeed. Together Snow and the Snowdrop have taken care of each other and became BFFs. Thank you for this joyful post and most excellent discussion. Sending much love and many hugs to my dear friends, The Fab Four of Cley.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Thank you very much, our dear friend Rebecca,
      what a beautiful tale. Unfortunately, we only know the modern version of it by Nicola Hahn who tells it in a colouring book for children. We tried to find the original version but in vain. Another fairy tale which is called “Snowdrop” was written by Hans Christian Andersen. It’s a love story. A rather romantic and beautiful poem was written by Siri’s 🙂 and 🙂 Selma’s favourite poet Josef von Eichendorff and we even found an English translation by Richard Stokes:

      Snowdrop
      There was a soft singing
      In the garden last night,
      As though warm breezes were blowing:
      ‘Sweet snowdrops, wake up, now,
      For we bring the warm days,
      Before anyone could guess.’ –
      There was no singing but much kissing,
      Gently shake your silent bells,
      So that they all ring
      With the bright splendour soon to be.
      Ah, they couldn’t wait,
      But field and garden were still
      White with the recent snow,
      And they wilted with grief.
      Thus have many poets laid themselves
      Down, weary with singing,
      And the Spring, which they awoke,
      Rustles above their grave.

      I think you will like it.
      Thank you very much for liking our post, text and pictures. It was fun writing it, told us Siri 🙂 and 🙂 Selma. They are just outside talking with their snowdrop-friends in our garden.
      With lots of love ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ to the Budd-Clan
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you for the introduction to Josef von Eichendorff. I learn something new, exciting and exhilarating every time I visit you blog. I read a short biography of Josef and want to do more research into his life and connections – names that I have never heard of before. I love the Snowdrop poem. I understand completely why Siri and Selma love Josef von Eichendorff’s poetry. I just found the English translation of AUS DEM LEBEN EINES TAUGENICHTS on the Gutenberg Project. https://www.gutenberg.org/files/35312/35312-h/35312-h.htm.

      Sending many thanks back with hugs and love to my dear friends, The Fab Four of Cley.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Good afternoon, dear Rebecca,
      Josef von Eichendorff was one of the prominent poets of the Romantics on the continent. For me, he is the one who is a bit like the English Lake Poets, very much inspired by nature and writing beguiling beautiful poems. He was a master of the rhythm of the German language.
      “Aus dem Leben eines Taugenichts” is seen by many as his mayor work. You will find in this novel everything important for the Romantics: The pursuit of freedom and the importance of nature. Especially Siri 🙂 and 🙂 Selma love the easy-going way of life of the protagonist.
      Thanks for your kind comment.
      Lots of love and big HUGs
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Lee,
      thank you very much for your kind comment and the work you are doing for our planet. It’s very much appreciated.
      Keep well and wishing you a wonderful weekend
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  16. My, those snow drops are pretty. As are the drawings. Thanks for the botany lesson. Our first flowers of spring are just about to burst forth: Shooting Stars. I’m pretty sure Siri and Selma would love them as well. –Curt

    Liked by 3 people

    • Dear Curt,
      Siri 🙂 and 🙂 Selma just had a look in our botany books how the Shooting Stars look like. They agree, they like this primula. We had never seen them before.
      Wishing you a wonderful weekend.
      Keep well
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks, Fab Four. 🙂 Pleased the Siri and Selma checked them out! They are a lovely flower and will soon be growing in profusion on our property and in the National Forest next door. 🙂 –Curt

      Liked by 1 person

  17. Lovely photos of one of my favorite flowers, the white and crispy Snowdrop. You have a lovely blog!
    Also, thank you for the comment on my blog.
    Have a nice weekend!
    Anita

    Liked by 4 people

    • Good morning, dear Anita,
      thank you very much for visiting our Bookfayrie-Blog and for commenting. We like to visit your blog as well. It reminds us of the happy times we have had in Sweden. Our beloved Hanne-Dina is Norwegian born near the Swedish border and our dear Master spent his childhood in idyllic Småland and later on Öland. We love the pictures as well as the texts of your beautiful blog.
      Wishing you a wonderful weekend as well
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  18. The photos are glorious, and the drawing unusually charming. I’d never seen a snowdrop until a year or so ago. Here, they tend to appear only where someone has planted them; I found a few in a cemetery, and in a garden of a historic house. As for hearing them drill through the ice and snow: of course! After all, it’s quite possible to hear corn growing in the fields. When I was a youngster in Iowa, we used to amuse ourselves by going out into the fields when fast growth was taking place — usually in the heat of July — and listen to the crackling of expanding plant cells. It was an amazing experience. You can hear it, too!

    Liked by 3 people

    • Dear Linda,
      Siri 🙂 and 🙂 Selma are sure that you can hear every plat grow. The snowdrops, the say, sing when drilling through snow and ice.
      Thanks for your link, very impressive! We’ll be out in the cornfields when the corn is growing. We hope Siri 🙂 and 🙂 Selma can tell us where to find a cornfield. As for you the snowdrops are rare for us cornfields are not common here at the coast but we have seen one or two. The snowdrops are native to continental Eurasia only. You find lots of different wild varieties in the Turkish mountains.
      Thanks for commenting.
      All the best.
      Stay healthy and happy
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Like

    • Hi Linda, thank you for informing us! I have just unspammed your comment. Sorry about that; I honestly don’t understand it, we have only ticked; when someone includes more than two links in a comment, it should come into moderation.

      It’s like a miracle; until a couple of weeks ago we used to get some 1000 – 2000 spams EVERY week. Each spam about half a page long, mostly offering cheap medicine from Romenia; it took ages to find a real comment and unspam it. Since we ticked off- “all commenters must be be registered with WP” we only had three spams, yours included. 🙂

      Thanks for commenting and sharing the video. Siri and Selma are already preparing their corn costumes for the summer now, we’re really looking forward to listening to the crackling sounds in the fields.

      We’re awaiting snow at the end of the weekend, juchu! 🙂

      Liked by 4 people

    • Thank you very much.
      We can spend ages looking at our snowdrops in the garden, drawing and photographing them or just looking and talking to them.
      All the best.
      Stay healthy and happy
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 3 people

  19. Stunning photos of a gorgeous little flower. I don’t recall ever seeing them, having lived almost all my life in the southern half of the US. Usually crocus are the first to pop through the snow around here. If there is snow, of course.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Dear Susan,
      crocuses popping out together with the daffodils after snowdrops, aconites and hellebores. We love the cold and winter, therefore, we mostly lived in the north of Europe where you find snowdrops everywhere. They are not native on the American continent. Botanists think they spread all over continental Eurasia coming from the highland of Turkey (like tulips and a lot of plants we have here).
      I suppose it’s too warm in the Southern part of the US for them.
      Thanks and cheers
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Ganz herz ❤ lichen Dank, lieber Ernst,
      super, dass dir unser Artikel gefallen hat. Uns hat es Spaß gemacht, diese Post zu schreiben.
      Halte dich gesund und munter.
      Liebe Grüße
      Klausbernd 🙂
      der gerade seine erste Corona Impfung bekommen hat.

      Liked by 1 person

  20. My dear friend Klausbernd,

    Thank you for sending your latest post on The World according to Dina.

    I have enjoyed reading very much also discovering new words I had never heard of before … wow, there is so much to learn in life.

    Take care in the snow.

    Keep warm and cosy.

    Chin Chin, Love, Paul 🥂🍾⚡️

    Liked by 1 person

    • My dear friend Paul,
      thank you so much for commenting 🙏 🙏 What a great surprise, it’s VERY much appreciated.
      When we write our blog articles we always learn a lot and even more so when answering the comments.
      We are looking much forward to the forecasted snow and planned some photo-excursions. I love to drive on snow, it’s so much fun. But I never did it with a 4-wheel-drive car before. We’ll see. I learned winter driving on frozen lakes when I lived in Finnland where one was driving 6 months on snow and ice.
      We just came back from my Corona vaccination at Holt that was very well organised.
      You keep warm as well and cosy.
      Love and Chin Chin 🥂
      Klausbernd and the rest of
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Like

  21. Gerlintpetrazamonesh
    Sie schrieb einen Kommentar, der allerdings in unserer Kategorie “Who is Dina” landete, deaswegen haben wir ihn hier kopiert. Da er ja hier besser aufgehoben ist,

    Sehr schöne BIlder. Ja, ein eigenes Weltbild: der Fotograf sieht die Welt durch sein Objektiv (damit aber bereits nicht mehr sehr objektiv, sondern subjektiv verengt, eine Auswahl, einen Blickwinkel wählend – aber muß man das nicht immer?). Ich versuche ja auch, mit meiner immer noch geliehenen Canon (wir können uns innerfamiliär nicht einigen, wem sie jetzt eigentlich zugehört) oder anderen fotografischen Apparaten ansprechende Bilder hinzubekommen, aber hier merkt man doch die einstellende Hand des Könners! Und die offenbar sehr guten Objektive. Die Schneeglöckchen passen gerade zur Jahrszeit, bald werden sie ihre Köpfe heben, erinnern aber auch an den jüngsten Literaturnobelpreis.
    Auf jeden Fall überzeugen mich auch diese Bilder wieder, nicht nur eine Geschichte mit Trollen drin zu schreiben, sondern auch mal dorthin zu reisen, wo die Steinkerle wohnen.
    Viel Spaß mit dem Niki-Auge!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Liebe Gerlint Petra,
      es ist wohl dieses Gedicht, auf das du dich beziehst:

      SNOWDROPS
      Do you know what I was, how I lived? You know
      what despair is; then
      winter should have meaning for you.

      I did not expect to survive,
      earth suppressing me. I didn’t expect
      to waken again, to feel
      in damp earth my body
      able to respond again, remembering
      after so long how to open again
      in the cold light
      of earliest spring–

      afraid, yes, but among you again
      crying yes risk joy

      in the raw wind of the new world.

      Da geben wir dir völlig recht, es gibt kein objektives Betrachten, erst recht nicht durchs Objektiv. Jedem Abbild ist die Subjektivität zu eigen, einem fotografischen Bild erst recht durchs Editing. Das macht es ja erst zur Kunst.
      Ins Land der Trolle und Steinkerle zu reisen lohnt sich allemal.
      Zurück zu diesem Gedicht von Louise Glück. Sie erinnert mich an Longfellows Einstellung zum Schnee, der, im Gegensatz zu uns, den Schnee auch eher mit depressiven Augen sieht, eine Einstellung, die auch hier in England weit verbreitet ist. Darüber werden wir vielleicht noch in unserer nächsten Post schreiben.
      Mit herzlichen Dank für deinen Kommentar.
      Alles Gute
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Like

  22. Ja, auf diese Louise habe ich mich auf meiner Seite (159, Louise…) bezogen und auf dieses ihr Glöckchen. Danke fürs Zurechtrücken meines Kommentars, ich hab mal wieder den rechten Weg nicht gefunden (Meist finde ich ihn ja, aber ebenso oft erst auf Umwegen)! Im Moment siehts hier noch schlecht mit Schneeglöckchen aus, zwar war schon eine kleine Warmphase, die selbst die Weide fehlinterpretierte, aber jetzt schneits wieder, wenn auch kaum nennenswert und es soll noch mal richtig kalt werden… nein, hier haben wir keine grundsätzlich negative Einstellung zum Schnee, kämen auch nicht weit damit, etwas höher noch und dann kommt bald der erste, jetzt grad trotz ausreichend weißem Pulver arbeitslose Schielift!
    Dann will ich mich mal noch ein bißchen umsehen, z.B. was bei den Robben noch so los ist.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Liebe Gerlint Petra,
      die Kegelrobben haben den Blakeney Point inzwischen alle verlassen und ihn den Harbour Seals und North Atlantic Seals überlassen, die ganzjährig hier wohnen.
      Wir haben ENDLICH richtig viel Schnee. Da waren wir heute Morgen schon lange draußen. Hanne-Dina hat viel fotografiert und wir anderen drei wacker gekuckt. Wenn du von Skilift schreibst, scheinst du wohl in den Bergen zu wohnen und bist so Schnee gewohnt. Bei uns ist er selten. Aber wir wohnten früher in Nordskandinavien und Kanada und Dina ist Norwegerin, so sind wir viel, viel Schnee gewohnt. Hier am Meer ist es erstaunlich mild und sehr sonnig.
      Alles Gute
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Like

    • Now our snowdrops sleeping under the deep snow. We have a great winter’s day, not cold, minus 2 min. and bright sunshine, absolutely wonderful.
      Thanks and keep well
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you very much, dear Ann-Christine 🙂
      Siri 🙂 and 🙂 Selma are sooooooo proud of their new dresses.
      We have the ideal winter now, lots of snow, not too cold, around minus 2 min. and sunshine. We are soon out, walking or driving around (we haven’t decided yet) for Hanne-Dina to take some pictures. The last two days have been out more or less from morning to night to enjoy this great winter weather that is very rare here.
      Wishing you all the best.
      Stay happy and healthy
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Like

  23. Last year our Somerset Chamber Choir sang a concert including a charming little song by a 16 year old Richard Strauss called “Schneeglocklein lacht..” I wonder with the alternative spelling if this is a colloquial name for snowdrops or possibly archaic German that Strauss has used for effect? Perhaps Klausbernd you have a view on this? Maybe you already know this music. It is from a collection of 7 songs he wrote as a teenager, each one a little gem of composition, quite astounding for one so young.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Good morning, dear Simon,
      I suppose the correct title is “Schneeglöcklein lacht”. This would be standard High German (Standart German) spelling. The suffix -lein is a diminutive meaning small. This suffix produces a vowel mutation (Umlaut) from o to ö. ‘Glöcklein’ and ‘Glöckchen’ is the same, the suffix -lein is exactly the same as the suffix -chen. Nevertheless ‘Schneeglöckchen’ is standard High German and ‘Schneeglöcklein’ is rather unusual but grammatically correct.
      And now I will listen to this song.
      All the best.
      Keep well
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Like

  24. Hey – Hey – Fab Four of Cley!
    Das ist ja ein ganz wunderbarer Beitrag, den ich gerade mit großer Begeisterung gelesen habe!
    Ich wusste nicht, dass Schneeglöckchen als Todesblumen benannt wurden! Niemals hätte ich das mit ihnen in Verbindung gebracht, da sie mit den Krokussen für mich für den kommenden Frühling und das Erwachen des Lebens im Garten stehen. Also vielen Dank für diese Erklärung.

    Wenigstens wusste ich bereits, warum man die Schneeglöckchen, Schneeglöckchen nennt. 🙂

    Einen zauberhaften Sonntag an der Küste für Euch!
    Barbara

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hallihallo, liebe Barbara,
      habe herzlichen Dank für deinen Kommentar.
      In der Symbolik wird alles, was weiß auftritt, auch mit dem Tod verbunden. Darauf nimmt Herbert Melville ausführlich in seinem Roman “Moby Dick” Bezug und der Film vom weißen Hai. Man stellt sich die Geister der Toten weiß vor. Wie in „Moby Dick“ wird auch bei Edgar Allan Poe „The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket” und bei Jules Vernes „Le Sphinx des Glaces“ Weiß eine ganz besondere, dem Tod und Grauen symbolisierende Rolle zugesprochen. – Ja, das haben unsere klugen Buchfeen Siri 🙂 und 🙂 Selma herausgefunden.
      Auch dir wünschen wir einen wunderbaren Sonntag
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • Hi, Kamila,
      thanks for your comment. Unfortunately, the snowdrops are faded. Now the daffodils and tulips are flowering.
      Wishing you a wonderful weekend
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • GREAT that you are back, welcome back 🙂
      Here the snowdrops are faded, the daffodils and tulips are in flower right now. Our climate is very mild as we are situated on the sea.
      We still love blogging, well, it’s something creative we do together and we like to communicate.
      Wishing you all the best, keep well
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

    • Liebe Ines,
      habe herzlichen Dank für deinen Kommentar. Schön, dass dir unsere Post gefällt.
      Mit lieben Grüßen vom kleinen Dorf am großen Meer
      Frohe Feiertage 🐣
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

    • We loved our snowdrops. They are gone here as well. Now we enjoy yellow tulips in our garden.
      Thanks for commenting 🙏 🙏
      All the best
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Like

    • Dear Roberta,
      we love snow and winter and couldn’t imagine to live without snow during wintertime. We used to live in Scandinavia, Canada and Finland before where we experienced great winters.
      We suppose that certain people like certain climates. We live in a zone of a maritime climate now, not too cold and not too warm. And unfortunately not much snow neither.
      Thanks for commenting 🙏 🙏
      All the best
      The Fab Four of Cley
      🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  25. Pingback: Irises | The World according to Dina

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