Saturday, 17 May 2014

Chapter Ninety One

A quiet couple of weeks behind us at the moment. The weather has been very mixed although it is warmer than of late. We have had some amazing sunny days, but also days were the wind would cut you in two. Linda is working very hard and is settling into a pattern with her job. She has her regular people to see and is making friends all over the Roseland.
The nicest thing for both of us is that we keep bumping into each other when out at work. Its nice to meet up for a few moments during the day and just be with each other. Especially if we are stood overlooking the sea. We met up the other day in St Mawes on the quay. It was lovely having a few minutes chat while we watched the fishing boats going out and saw the ferry coming in.
We both know just how lucky we are.
Linda is at her busiest at this time of the year with much work going on in the garden and at the allotment. Trays of plants are coming out of the greenhouse on an industrial scale. Some are flowers and plants for the garden, and the rest are vegetables and potatos for the allotment.
I wish I could do more to help, but it doesn't take much to put my back out these days. I keep getting lower back pain, especially after doing something stupid like a bit of digging, or a bit of lifting. Its not incapacitating or anything...its just sore for days after.
Where I can help out though, I do. So I mow the lawns and allotment grass; I fill the buckets and watering cans with water; I even put in and tied up all the runner bean poles the other day. 
Linda's allotment is a great success for her. Nick gave her all the manure she could use and she spread it over the top of the allotment at the beginning of last winter. When you consider how tough the whole allotment had been to dig when she first took it on 18 months ago...the difference now is amazing.
The manure has done its job and so has Linda.
That first year she dug the whole thing by hand and cleared all the weeds out of it. The ground was hard and full of clay; the weeds well entrenched; and the weather not good at all.
 This is as bad as you could let an allotment go. Its the one closest to us but shows what ours looked like a couple of years ago. The next four photos beneath show just how much Linda has achieved and the work that she has put in. It has been amazing and I am so proud of her.

From that early start she now has both plots well worked with vast amounts of manure; she has had some weeds return but these have been shallow and very easily removed; And the beds are now more clearly defined and established.

She is a typical country girl and is insistant that preperation is key.
I joined her the other day and gave the grass its third cut of the year. She has nice neat paths all around both plots and also a decent sized cleared area at the top. Its not the biggest contribution in the world but she is delighted with the way it all looks.

Meanwhile the plants and the seeds are going into the prepared beds and the whole thing is taking shape. Just like I remember it back in the fifties and early sixties; folk eating food that they grew in their own gardens. Brilliant.

My own work has been pretty busy with the election material coming through. All bar one of the main parties have posted election material so that was seven different lots plus the poll cards to deliver. A busy time. I finally got my old van back. She is going well at the moment and I hope it will continue into the distant future. The van and I seem to be slowly wearing out together. Its a coin toss to find out which one will lose a part next.
We are no nearer getting a reserve postman out here. The lad who came out here to start the job has been sacked. The last nine in to Truro have all had their contracts terminated during their probationary periods because we had to many people on our books for the work load. Very sad, although not unexpected. As they keep telling us..."We're a business, not a service." It should keep the shareholders happy I suppose.
Its not all doom and gloom though, because I have to confess I have never been happier than when I'm out on my round.
All else is right in our little world; we have family coming down during the year so that will be good; we are making more of our time here as well and trying to get out more; and we are both having fun with stuff. I have the NCI, plus Poetree and writing;  Linda has her Samba Band, plus the garden and allotment; people know who we are; and we are settling in very well.
Our local lane edges and banks have been a profusion of wild flowers just lately. I managed to pick Linda a bunch of these just before the grass cutter came through and cleared the side for Health and Safety purposes.

We are also part of the front line troops in Ruan Lanihorne in the Great War between The Village...and the Rats. The wretched creatures are moving into the village, as they are over most of Cornwall, in their hunt for food. There is a lot of them about this year in Britain and it seems to tie in with the enforced savings that the councils have had to make.
The cut in services such as pest control has had a devastating effect on some places...and don't get me started on the 'pot holes' in the roads. I shall disappear down one any day now, van and all.
Anyway; we are at war with the rats. Neighbours are laying down poison which is having a great affect. Gary and Jeanettes cat, 'Magic'; known as 'The Bandit' in some parts of the village due to his antisocial behaviour is also catching and killing some of them.
Magic is a great favourite of ours and is very good with Linda and I, plus the guinea pigs. We have no problem with him as I think his view of us is as, lower members of his pride. Jeanette and Gary are his main pride members...but he knows we feed and look after him when they are away.
Anyway...he is a good little hunter.
I am not so bad myself with my trusty air rifle. Bought back in 1973 for 50 pence off a friend of mine it is now finally getting some useful use. I bought it so long ago, I was able to carry it back home in full view through the streets of Farnham...and nobody said a word. I even walked quite happily past the police station without a problem. Try that today and see how far you would get.
What is good news is, my contribution to the war effort is a very useful average of three dead rats a week. We all do our bit. 

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