During a brief lull in the wet and windy weather the forecasters tell us will worsen over the next two months, I met and spoke with Ralph, the owner of The Spinney, on my way to Hordle Cliff beach and back. He recounted the history of the once again closed Royal Oak pub on the corner of Downton Lane. Apparently a few years ago a family successfully ran it for nine years. They were always packed out. Having lost the country pub atmosphere under a series of successors, it has failed to survive since.
Chalet demolitionStatic caravanDespite the rain, men demolishing the older chalets in Shorefield Country Park were able to keep a bonfire going. The replacements, providing work for M. Doe, are being erected within a matter of days.
Jackie had bought a pomegranate for Flo, which enabled me to illustrate my post ‘The Bees’ of 29th May 2012 with a photograph. Our granddaughter eschewed the pin method favoured by Chris and me. She preferred to pick out the fleshy seeds with her fingers.
Some weeks ago, Jackie’s sister Helen had entrusted to her a tiny pair of ailing plants. Floppy little things, they seemed to be beyond being restored to health. Helen’s faith, however, has paid off. One was to be adopted by her sister, the other to be fostered in respite care.
Clematis SeiboldiiWhat I thought was a dwarf passionflower has now flowered in its pot, and has the strength to climb up its supports. This is a clematis Sieboldii, appropriately nicknamed the passionflower clematis. Clearly a certain amount of favouritism has been employed, for this is the adopted twin, which has benefited from diluted tomato feed, and regular caresses and sweet nothings.Clematis Sieboldii in incubatorThe other, the foster child, although beginning to show signs of viable life, remains in an incubator in the utility room.

Errol’s lilies still enliven our sitting room.

Our dinner this evening consisted of Jackie’s delicious sausage casserole (recipe); mashed potato and swede; carrots and runner beans followed by a variety of sweets, mine being scones and strawberry jam. I finished the malbec.

P.S. Jackie tells me I got the wrong end of the stick over the plants. It was only last week that Helen had handed over her clematis for resuscitation. As can be seen, it has already responded to her sister’s equally attentive tender loving care.

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