Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Chapter Eleven

Once again I'm back to being Postman Liam. I started work on Monday morning at 0830 to find a very different postal world down here than I'm used too. I am the most senior one in the office by at least three years...but it doesn't mean much. In this office I'm pretty much the lowest form of life on the lowest rung of the food chain.
My round is literally two hours long. It is thrown off for me, prepped and tied up for me, and then brought out to a small village called Grampound for me to deliver it. In the future I will start at 10-30...and be home by 12-30. I can't believe that this is all Royal Mail want me for.
I deliver to one road and three estate roads. At least I have my foot in the door although sadly, I never actually go into the office. I collect my delivery from the back of the mail van belonging to the post lady doing the rest of the village. I am hoping to be trained up as the relief postman for St Mawes and Portscatho as well in the future. This will give me more to do and be more what I'm used too. At least I will get a van and a proper delivery.
The clocks went back this weekend and we managed to remember to change them in good time. There have been times in the past when I forgot but it never caused too big a problem. I wonder who will change the clocks at Farnham delivery office now?...it was always my job in the past.
My new postal duties are very simple so let me take you through my delivery so far.
We use our cars down here. I park my car in a little estate and take out the first of three pouches. I then head for the main road. Helpfully, the first two houses I go too have no names up...I take inspired guesses at this point as always. The main road is typically Cornwall---no traffic compared with Surrey--so this is a nice bonus. Just as well to because there is no pavement in places, and where there is pavement there is cars and lorries parked on it.
I go up one side and, yes, you've guessed it; back down the other. Return to car; first pouch delivered.
I then take out my second and largest bag and head into the estate. Nice houses and easy to deliver I am around it quite quickly and back at my car in no time at all. Third pouch comes out and I head to the next estate and deliver that one.
I don't deliver any Special Deliveries. I do deliver the Recorded Deliveries though and return my card to the village post office when I've finished. I then drive home. Its an odd way to work and not something I'm used too.
That in a nutshell is my Royal Mail working career at present.
Linda is very busy and is constantly on the move. She is hard at work with the 'Singing for the Brain' activity that is going down so well. That involves her heading off to various venues all over the county. She is also visiting the memory cafes were various sufferer's of dementia and their carer's can meet up and chat. She enjoys it and covers all of Cornwall pretty much on her own.
She was in Penzance on Monday...she's in Plymouth today...and in between roaring around the Duchy...she is also in the office and working from there.
It makes her tired though.
Saturday morning I awoke at 06-30 and made us both a cup of tea. I drank mine and carried on reading my book until 09-00. All Linda did was collapse back asleep, did not drink her tea, and slept until 09-00.
Then she woke up and unleashed the 'dogs of domesticity'. In a frenzy unheard of on my side of the bed she sallied forth and conquered the house. In the time it took me to get out of bed and downstairs Linda had stormed the bedroom and removed the sheets and pillowcases for washing; had attacked every carpet in the place with the 'dyson' and proceeded to beat, sweep , and clean her way from top to bottom of the house.
The assault on the main living room was over by the time I got down stairs but there seemed to be a renewed counter attack on the bathroom. I stepped across the cleanliness of the main part of the house and carefully lowered myself into the armchair. I knew I should do this as Linda had already put a mug of coffee beside it for me. This unspoken signal of the mug of coffee reads as follows...
"sit down, read your book or watch the telly, do not get in my way, this 'IS' my idea of fun and I enjoy it, and I love you Mully".
As the final mopping and cleaning of the bathroom faded into the distance, 'the charge' was sounded and Linda galloped into the kitchen. It was like a scene from 'the charge of the light brigade'...but with only one person in it. Better still; has anyone ever seen the wonderful picture of the wild eyed 'charge of the greys at the Battle of Waterloo'? This was the picture in my mind as Linda gathered herself before charging into the kitchen and doing battle in there.
The whole house was actually in good shape as I had sorted it all out myself in my role as househusband...why I bothered I do not know.
If asked Linda will relate the tale to you of the dirt on the kitchen floor back in Godalming. It went thus:...
"Oy Mully, I know you hoovered up for us, but have you swept the kitchen floor."
"No love I haven't. Its not dirty."
"Yes it is; its filthy."
"Whats wrong with you, its clean."
There then followed the sound of a broom being whipped around the floor and knocking against the walls and cupboard's. This was followed by:...
"Oh Mully, could you come here a minute."
I made the tactical mistake of wandering into the kitchen. Linda stood there with the broom in her hands and a small pile of dirt on the floor. I then followed this tactical mistake by opening my big mouth and making another one.
"Blimey love," gesturing at the pile, "Whats all that stuff?"
"What my darling; this little pile of stuff here? Oh its nothing really; this is the dirt you couldn't see on your 'clean' floor."
I slunk back to the living room feeling crushed and now I just let her get on with it.
To return to this tale of domestic bliss down here in Cornwall. Linda went through the kitchen like a whirlwind. I never saw what might have been cleaned because I stayed on my chair, in the safe zone, with my face wedged into my book.
Later that evening I discovered that all the shelves and cupboards had been re-arranged, including all the drawer space, so that she would now know were everything is. Linda is happier with it now and I am busy re-learning were everything has now moved too. What fun!
In the peace of the rest of the morning and early afternoon she also made more 'home-made' soup than you could ever imagine and filled the freezer upstairs with bags of the stuff. She's a great one for laying in supplies of anything 'home-made' for the winter...and it tastes superb.
We had a visit later from my oldest friend, Tess and her daughter; my god daughter; Kacey. Kacey lives down here at Summercourt and its great to know there is someone else here who know's us.
Tess had come down for a visit and agreed to come over and give me a hair cut.
I've told everyone down here that I wont need the local hairdresser's number because my hair dresser will be coming down from Surrey every six weeks or so to cut my hair. I dont think they believed me.
It was good to have them both around and we had a nice afternoon together chatting and catching up.
The weather has been wet and miserable but we have had some lovely days inbetween as well. There is still quite a bit of warmth in the old sun if the wind is not blowing. We took advantage of the dry weather and the warmth and took another walk along our beach on Sunday. It wasn't to busy and it was good to do a bit of rock pooling and watching the waves roll in.
I have entered another competition with a couple of stories and this time I have included a couple of poems. I hope they do well.         

1 comment:

  1. Hi Liam, my good old dad called the other day to inform me you are on the high lanes. We also live on and love the Roseland. We have got a small cafe on porthcurnick beach called the hidden hut. It would be great to meet up again after all these years. I have some very distant memories of you because It must have been nearly 25 years ago. I am the son of Brian Stallard of Farnham. if you would like to meet up mum and dad are down in a couple of weeks your more than welcome to come round for diner. Cheers for now Simon Stallard.