The human body is a wonderful thing: where yesterday evening I could barely move my hands, this morning my fingers are lithe and leaping over the keyboard. The reason was that it was actually dry yesterday morning, so I took the strimmer out and cut the grass in the back garden, which had got too long to mow successfully.
This is no mean feat as it is quite a big bit of grass. (I say ‘grass’ but it’s actually moss and all manner of other things. I quite like the term greensward, although it it no-one’s idea of a lawn, because one thing it is is green.) It’s supposed to look like this:
But I no longer feel that I have to keep up with Lady-Vendor’s standards of garden maintenance. It’s impossible anyway. She had a gardener who came for a whole day each week and I can’t have that. So between us, Pauline – who comes for a couple of hours a week – and I do what we can, if the weather permits. And it hasn’t permitted recently, so things have got a bit out of hand. One thing always leads to another and I soon found myself strimming the banks along the road and at the back of the house, and mowing the front garden as well.
I mutter to myself while I’m doing it: “There, almost done now. Ooof, just a bit more. There, that’s the best I can do…” Luckily, there are only cats, birds and insects to hear my madness.
On top of everything, I realised rather late that I was expecting house guests from Canada in a while, so, cursing my inability to see the bigger picture (too many things to focus on at once in this summer’s calendar), I set about cleaning the house from top to bottom and making the beds up for their stay. Somehow, the corners of rooms and windows are always adorned with cobwebs; the floor muddy and strewn with cat litter and nameless bits; and the windowsills dotted with dead flies.
Two hours later I headed back to the Real World, joining hoards of others, mostly holidaymakers with caravans and trailers, coming back from the west country along the M5. Without the exhortations of LOCOG, this would probably have been a four-hour journey. But, despite arriving in London in the rush hour, there was no traffic at all. A completely empty Games Lane on the stretch of M4 from Heathrow due to the Olympic rowing in Eton but still almost NO TRAFFIC in the other two lanes, and I got back in normal time, despite crawling along between between Bristol and Swindon.
Anyway, I’m off for a bit of a rest now. Or I will be, once I’ve got everything sorted out…