Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Allotment Work Is Jammy

Ding, dong goes the doorbell.

A young lady in pyjamas answers the door.

A scruffy, unshaven young man raises an eyebrow and asks: “Are you the lady with the hedge that needs attention?”

Cue the Benny Hill theme music…

I don’t normally spend my Saturday mornings howffing hedges out of strange ladies’ gardens (by strange lady I mean she was a stranger to me - she was perfectly pleasant in her demeanour) but I am Green Dad: Allotment Holder.

The extremely jaggy hedge was apparently due to be removed and dumped but the allotment lot heard about it and agreed to take it off the lady’s hands. An hour or so of shovelling and it was uprooted and transported across town and transplanted along the boundary of a couple of plots. This is apparently a temporary home until the super-strong fence is erected around the whole site in a week or so.

While I and a couple of other lads were hedging others were digging, clearing litter from bushes around the allotment site and giving the Big Shed another coat of varnish. It wasn’t long before the whole place really looked spruce.

At which point the scones appeared. There are times when I think I live in a timewarp by living in Nairn. It is possible to watch cricket at the links, go for a stroll along the promenade and wave hello to the Major on his Penny Farthing. Okay, so I made the last bit up but I did once go for a stroll along the promenade and bumped into a couple of old friends who informed me they had been ‘fortunate enough to have been invited to lunch at the golf club’.

I too hope one day I will be so fortunate.

Timewarp on the allotments involved a well spoken lady with greying hair suddenly appearing with a wicker basket of still-warm fruit scones and homemade strawberry and gooseberry jam. I got the first one. I may have knocked some innocent allotmenteers to the ground to ensure this and I’d have no hesitation in doing it again.

Warm jammy scone in the sun watching robins and blackbirds hopping in and out of the hedge we’d planted… So satisfying!

Later that day Wife-features noticed scratches on my hands and I have a couple more on my legs. The fruits of my labour!

I’ve also just remembered I booked some time off work in early April. This holiday will coincide with, I hope, the handover of the allotments. Digging and sowing here I come. Mind you, I’ll probably have to supply my own scones.

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