Soon after midday Jackie and I drove to New Milton to collect our friend Sheila who has joined the family group. After lunch, Jackie, Flo, Sheila, and I went on a hunt for Becky, Ian, and Scooby, who had gone ‘to the beach’. They were not at Milford on Sea. They were not at Barton on Sea. We left them various mobile messages which they eventually picked up when they got home, and we were at Barton on Sea. Inevitable, I suppose. We joined them at home, where they told us the story of the Scotch egg. Whilst on the beach they watched a family having a picnic. A seagull swooped on the food and made off with a whole Scotch egg. This was clearly too heavy for it. It dropped it. Right under their dog, Scooby’s, nose. Manna from Heaven. He didn’t stop to question his luck. He devoured it immediately.
Our conversations ranged through cricket, crosswords, community projects like Commonside in Mitcham, and local politics. Commonside, where Becky worked for ten years, is in the London Borough of Merton; Jackie worked for Merton Social Services Department for more that thirty years; Sheila, Director of Merton Mind until the funding ran out earlier in the year, and a Merton Councillor for more than fifty years, had trained as a Social Worker with me at Croydon in the class of 1969/70. We had not known it before, but in our teens Sheila and I both frequented the Oval, Surrey County Cricket ground, and Sheila had worked opposite Mitcham Cricket Club’s ground which prompted the story of ‘Six Leg Byes’ told on 17th June 2012. The main cricket focus today came from this the third day of the Old Trafford Test match between England and India. England won the game in very quick time, two days early.
I accompanied Jackie giving Sheila a tour of the garden. We have an even darker pink variety of Japanese anemone now in bloom, and the penstemons are flourishing.
In addition to the jewellery Flo is spending her time making, she has started to produce wire animals, bringing all her natural skill in reproducing a wide range of creatures, perfectly proportioned and with life-like stances, in a variety of art forms. She used my camera to photograph a frog and e-mail it to a friend. She was very patient as I stumbled my way through explaining the the process on my iMac.
This evening we all dined on Jackie’s superb sausage casserole (recipe), mashed potato, and crisp vegetables, followed by jelly and ice cream. Lambrusco, Marquis de St.Vincent Medoc 2012, and Hoegaarden were the drinks on offer.