Smelling Smoke

Early this morning I optimistically joined Martin in the garden where he enjoyed rather more success than I did.

Despite Jackie’s popping out to replenish my diminishing supplies of firelighters I was unable to breathe life into the damp garden refuse which could not recover from several days of soaking.

Even the bench on which I rested collapsed beneath me.

Eventually I gave up trying and returned inside to nursing knees repeatedly bent in a lost cause, smelling pointless smoke, and ruing the tiny brown-rimmed hole in my shirt that one of the myriad of otherwise useless flaking sparks had managed to penetrate.

Martin, on the other hand, successfully continued his careful clearance of beds and surrounding paths;

and recycled some of the old patio paving as supplementary stepping stones through the Weeping Birch Bed.

My failure was compounded by being unable to access my site to draft this post until 5.30 p.m.

This evening we all dined on Jackie’s tangy piri-piri lemon chicken and colourful savoury rice with which she drank Hoegarden and I drank more of the Coonawarra red wine.


  1. I was planning on a break of the law, by breaking smoke control regs with a bonfire, but like you the recent soakings have defeated me for now…

  2. Sounds like the two best parts of your day were Martin’s success and the Culinary Queen’s excellent dinner. My knees are sending your knees sympathetic pangs. Hope rest, icing, or wine help. I have found that knees do not suffer in silence. ;(

    1. Thanks very much, Pat. I’m much more relaxed about such days now. I even know the internet will sort itself out. 🙂

  3. Stick with the wine, Derrick. Between not being able to start a fire, crashing in your bench and not being about to get on-line – you might better go to bed early – just to be safe!

  4. I do hope you knees are feeling a bit better after your unsuccessful day in the garden. I get days like that. It’s a sign of old age I’m afraid. At least Martin got some work done. I wonder how his knees feel after all that kneeling.

    1. Thanks very much, Chrissy. Fortunately for him, Martin is half my age. I do still recover quickly though

  5. I hope that you are okay, Derrick! I suggest a little bit of petrol on the damp refuse, that should help it touch off and burn.

  6. Giving the lie to the saying that there is no smoke without fire.

    I am sorry about the hole in the shirt and the knees. I can identify with both those problems.

  7. Ah good, your comment box is working today Derrick, but probably my computer, I’ve been having connection problems this week … I’ve finally finished tidying and cleaning my home ready for my cousins arrival on Sunday. I’m tired and the old back is aching, but feeling comfortably satisfied that the task is done … just have a bit more work to do on the agenda for my book launch on Sunday … and then I can rest and relax on Saturday.

  8. Sounds like you had some adventure in your very own garden. I’ve wondered about the functionality of that bench. Hope you evening was peaceful.

    1. Thanks very much, JoAnna. Fortunately the bench was against the fence so I didn’t fall

  9. I suppose the good news is that you didn’t need your outside fire in order to produce a hot meal. On the other hand, I can almost imagine a bit of smoke coming out of your ears when you bumped up against more posting problems. I’m glad you managed a good dinner (thanks, Jackie!) and that you obviously managed a post!

  10. Your disappointment in lighting up the soggy pile of refuge seems to have been perpetuated by WordPress. But you remain quite the Achilles, even if wounded.

  11. I’m so sorry to hear about your knees! I hope they are feeling better now.
    I checked really early today to read your post and couldn’t find one. Now I know why.
    Yes, we all have days like this. Up and onward! As Scarlett O’Hara said, “…tomorrow is another day.” 🙂
    Martin is such a wonderful helper!
    (((HUGS))) ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

  12. Oh my, not a great day! I hope a good night’s sleep was had and the morning has brought renewed strength and optimism. Sending sympathetic hugs, Derrick ????

      1. Apparently these work with the traditional keyboard use of colons and brackets 🙂

  13. Martin was a wonderful find! I’m glad your knees recovered quickly. so sorry about the Internet holding you up.
    Occasionally, I’ve had the same problem with the comment box as Ivor has had. Refreshing the page has worked for me.

  14. I am sorry your shirt was singed, Derrick. One has to watch those sparks! Or lit candles, too. I once knew a waitress with long, flaming red hair she kept in a beehive. Behind the bar at the restaurant/inn there were many candles, lit for ambience. She accidentally tilted her head back into one of them, unknowingly setting the top of her beehive on fire.

    1. Thanks very much, Lavinia. Gosh – that was very dangerous for you acquaintance. My singe is very small

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