Thursday, 11 August 2011

An Apple a Day

The Much Malarkey Manor apple tree has done itself proud this year. Now in its fourth year of growth, it has shot both upwards and outwards and is positively groaning under the weight of fruit. I skip into the garden ever other day and fill up the fruit bowl. I'm going to need a ladder soon, so skipping will probably become inappropriate, dangerous and a Health and Safety issue, and quite frankly I can't be doing with all the paperwork so please don't mention this to the authorities.

Now, Mrs Pumphrey has discovered that if she stands on the fence surrounding the herb garden, she can fling herself with sufficient force at the tree and knock an apple or two from the branches to the ground where Mrs Slocombe is waiting to grab the spoils and rush off for a spot of apple chomping. This is bad.

'Well, we're fed up with courgettes,' they say. I suppose I can't blame them - I'm getting pretty fed up with courgettes, too. But they need to stand back from the apple tree. Or there will be trouble.

So, not only do I find myself rushing into the garden waving tea-towels at the pigoens to stop them pinching the chicken food, I give an extra tea-towel wave at Mrs P to get her off the fence and away from the apple tree. If only, I think, the chickens would eat the chicken food. Then the pigeons wouldn't go after it and the hens wouldn't go after the apples. If only it were that simple.

Chickens are such life-enhancing creatures.

Today I am hiding. The house is silent. There is a cat curled up asleep either side of me and I am losing myself in the writing of a short story that I started early yesterday morning and is proving to be a load of tosh. (I am trying to detosh myself by having a blogging break, but find myself aimlessly rambling instead.) I am also fiddling with my Kindle and going, 'Cor, look what it can do,' a lot. I've finished 'Northanger Abbey' and am on a mission to download as many freebie books from Amazon as I can. One of them is 'Diary of a Nobody' which is proving very entertaining ; Pooter is in the process of painting everything in his house with red enamel paint. And I am wondering at what point in the plot his wife is going to leave him, because I'd have been out the door by page 8.

Later, I may go into the garden and do some weeding. This is only because I now have in my possession a green waste wheelie bin from the council which is going to cost £30 per annum for the privilege of using, and I feel obliged to fill it up for collection every fortnight in order to get my money's worth. Luckily, the buddleia is coming to the end of its flowering and is in need of drastic pruning. And there are some pretty ropey-looking lupins in the front borders that need dealing with, too.

And I have just remembered that I have a £15 gift certificate to spend on Amazon so should I develop a sudden consumer urge I can satisfy it with some random purchase. Today, I am mostly feeling like randomly purchasing a copy of Puccini's Madame Butterfly, or the latest Paul Torday novel, or a new key ring, or a gastric band.

A man has been out this week to assess the replacement of a couple of roof tiles, and the sorting out of the boiler. He is a multi-tasker. He is also bi-polar, though I'm not sure how that helps in roofing or boilering nor why he felt the need to tell me in the first place. He is going to get back to me vis a vis costs and dates which I sometimes think is tradesman talk for 'I can't be bothered to deal with such a trivial job.' Still, I'll give him the benefit of the doubt, the country being in economic straits and all so surely no job can be too small, and await his getting back to me with eager anticipation - well, okay, mild interest.

I have been assessing our finances (because we are taking out a new mortgage deal and such activities forces one into assessing one's finances) and have decided that we can at last get the upstairs shower-room done properly. And by 'properly' I mean 'professionally' and not 'bodgily' by which I mean by me and Andy, because although we are a very good vet and a very good teacher between us, we are rubbish with plumbing, tiles, lights and showers. Therefore, a bathroom man has also been out, and has said he will provide us with a quote in a week's time. I'd rather he provide us with a new shower room, but if he feels he needs to kick off with a quote or two I hope it's Oscar Wilde or Shakespeare. Or Dorothy Parker. She's always good for a laugh. Ahahahahahaha!!

The bathroom man did provide a verbal quote before he went, which didn't scare me too much, so I expect we shall go ahead anyway.

Right, back to the short story tosh. Have a good tosh-free day!

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