There are fairies at the bottom of our garden!
OK, they are not fairies at all but they are doing us a good turn and sprinkling a generous helping of magic fairy dust on our Secret Garden. (The Secret Garden is the area of lawn and shrubs at the very end of our garden, mostly
hidden from view by the tamarisk tree and various assorted plants. The grandchildren, in days gone by, christened it thus because they imagined nobody could actually see what they were up to when they were in the Secret Garden. We could, of course.)
What is happening is that a new fence is being erected along the rear of our garden by the people whose house backs onto ours. It will tidy up our garden beautifully and we are indebted to them and to the workmen engaged in erecting
We found out about the work a couple of months ago when we answered a ring on the door-bell to find our neighbours-from-the-bottom-of-the-garden (whom we had never met before) smiling away on the door step. They had come to tell
us, they explained, about the work on a replacement fence. I think the same thought crossed Mr B's mind and mine at the same time: what kind of financial contribution might this pleasant pair be expecting from us, given that we would stand to benefit from
the work to be put in hand? I could tell that Mr B was rehearsing his standard "We are poor pensioners who have to decide each day whether to heat our house or put food on our table" speech. It's utter tosh, of course, but he delivers it so well. Worthy of
an Oscar, his performance, I always listen to it spell-bound.
But no, the thoroughly charming couple wanted nothing from us. Nothing at all. In a world where everyone seems to want something from everybody else, it was heart-warming. They just wanted to inform us of their intentions - which
were totally good, as far as we were concerned.
This was, as I said, some time ago and we had almost forgotten all about it when this morning we became aware of a procession of workmen walking up and down at the bottom of our garden. We are so accustomed to the pleasant seclusion
of our garden that this invasion took us aback for a bit, until we remembered. I wondered if we should head up to the end of the garden and offer the welcome workmen a cup of tea or coffee but Mr B reminded me that it was really nothing to do with us and would
be up to Mr and Mrs Thoroughly Pleasant Neighbours to keep the fencers fed and watered as they saw fit.
I didn't really have time anyway because I was off to the dentist for a filling. I love my dentist, she always remembers to ask me about my family and was keen for an update on The Twins' progress. I remember a previous dentist,
back in our village days, who went by the unfortunate, if rather appropriate, name of Mr Mercy. Attending his surgery just after My Boy was born, I was asked by the receptionist if I had had a boy or a girl. I couldn't help wondering exactly why the gender
of my new babe mattered and raised the matter later with Mr Mercy. He looked slightly shame-faced as he confessed that he was only too well aware of the deficiencies of his chair-side manner and always requested the receptionist to gather this information
in order to be able to ask: "How is the little fella?" so earning Brownie points from appreciative new mothers. I found his admission rather sweet in a strange way.
I was still suffering from a frozen lip and mouth when I turned up for our Tuesday afternoon cribbage session so I had to pass on the biscuits though I did have a cup of coffee, hoping that I wasn't dribbling as I drank it. Delia
said I was fine but then that's Delia for you. By the time I arrived home, having stopped off to pick up something for dinner from the Co-op, it was too dark to check what progress had been made by the fairies at the bottom of our garden. It will be quite
exciting, I tell myself, when I draw back the curtains in the morning.
Once the brand new fence is in place, we shall have to do a bit of tidying up, removing the old rickety fencing on our property which is in a state of total disrepair. We may need the help of a Son in Law and I know just the fella.
The only payment he will require is a roast beef dinner.
I'm sure we can oblige...