Hedge Cutting

rumer-goddenIt was an exchange with Cynthia Guenther Richardson, herself a talented story-writer in Tales for Life, that alerted me to the fact that I had unread novels of Rumer Godden in my bookshelves. Cynthia’s enthusiasm led me to begin reading ‘A Candle For St. Jude’, yesterday, and finish it this morning. Like Tales for Life this book keeps the reader eager to learn the denouement. The work is full of beautifully described detail and insightful characterisation. I will not reveal the plot, but can say that all senses and emotions are carefully evoked. I mentioned the setting yesterday, and will add that the writer’s intimate knowledge of a dancing school clearly comes from her own training as a dancer, and subsequent running of her own such establishment.

Mike repairing Velux window

Paul and Mike from Double Glazing Doctor replaced the hinges in five of our Everest windows and repaired the leak in the Velux kitchen window, and this afternoon our new Samsung television was installed.

Butterfly Speckled Wood

A new visitor to our garden was, I think, a Speckled Wood butterfly.

I wandered down to Roger’s gate and back, in time to witness hedge cutting in Downton Lane.Hedge cutting 1Hedge cutting 2

Hedge cutting 3

This presented some interesting traffic problems.

Early this evening Becky, Ian, and Scooby arrived for their holiday with us. We all dined at The Red Lion in Milford. My choice of meal was a meaty Mexican chilli burger, served with crisp salad and chips. Jackie couldn’t eat all her hunter’s chicken, so I enjoyed some of that as well. My drink was Ringwood’s best bitter.

Parents Must Allow Children To Be Adventurous

On another dull, overcast, morning, Jackie drove to a follow-up appointment with her knee surgeon whilst I stayed at home for a visit from Paul, the Double Glazing Doctor, who arrived on time and gave the promised, reasonable, estimate later on. The work will be done next Wednesday when the new television is to be installed.

I amused myself by sorting and scanning a few more of the photographic prints returned by Elizabeth.

In 1986 Jessica, Sam, Louisa, and I spent some time house sitting for the Drapers in Meldreth, and in the process, enjoying a holiday.

Sam 1986

This shot of Sam shows that a gentle, kind, boy nevertheless has a penchant for playing soldiers. Give him a cricket bat and his grandfather’s military cap and what does he do with the bat? My son is living proof that children who play in this way are not necessarily destined to grow up with killer instincts.

Joseph & Louisa 1986

Later that year, on an outing with Elizabeth, Rob, Adam, and Danni, Louisa enjoys a ride on the back of my brother, her uncle Joseph.

Louisa 5.89 001Louisa 5.89 002

Louisa, of course, will have a go at anything. Here she is rolling around in a galvanised tub on the lawn at Lindum House in May 1989. I know it has a jagged hole and she has bare feet, but she was very careful, and parents must allow children to be adventurous.  Had Jessica and I  been more timorous ourselves would this little girl have grown up to complete the Three Peaks Challenge? I know I couldn’t have done it, even when fit.

This much brighter afternoon, I heaved the rest of the rocks out of the recovered bed, laid a few more stepping stones, and built up borders with them.

Later I took a stroll down to Roger’s farm gate and back.

Grasses veiling dahlia

A freshly blooming dahlia in The Shady Bed is veiled by small ornamental grasses,


and alongside The Brick Path eryngium is nicely framed by the red Japanese maple.

Garden gate

On Downton Lane the secret garden gate looked particularly inviting,

Blackberry blossom

and blackberry blossom is developing into as yet green fruit.

This last quartet of un-enhanced photographs were shot on the setting that replicates film.

This evening Jackie produced her classic sausage casserole which we enjoyed with crisp carrots, cabbage, and new potatoes. She drank her customary Hoegaarden whilst I drank Parra Alta malbec 2014.