Monday, December 08, 2008
how does your garden grow?
today provided ample blog-fodder, dear readers. in order to explain events today i will have to rewind a little. i hope those more distractable among you are able to keep up.
you may remember before himself's operation there was frantic activity involving mick and martin the builders. among other things they constructed a raised bed. this was for the knit-your-own-vegetables project, which is part of the money-saving drive. anyway, the raised bed has been sitting there waiting for herself to fill it with soil. she came home from work the week before himself's operation grinning like a cheshire cat (wash my mouth out!)
"i've met a man in the street and he is going to bring us some soil!" she said. it transpired that this was not quite as insane as it sounds. the man in question lives round the corner and has a lurcher so he can't be all bad. herself decided on him supplying the soil, not because of the lurcher, but because he has a truck which says that he is a landscape gardener. he came and had a look and a price was agreed for the work.
however, before the soil arrived, disaster struck in the form of a water bill. it seems we now have to pay for water in accordance with how much we use. regular readers will be aware that my boy likes to take his time in the shower. in addition there is a lot of hosing up after young dave. and the peeps are always washing clothes. so the water bill was huge. it ate up all the money herself had earmarked for the soil, so she had to tell the man she met in the street that it was not going to happen.
fast forward to the last time we saw the snake-charmers. they have a large garden which they have great plans for. they also have a large pile of topsoil which they don't want. herself, ever the resourceful one, said she would take it off their hands.
today was the appointed day for the collection of the soil. young dave and i were put in the back of the car. my boy was put in the front. he is off school with mysterious queasiness and dizzyness and general out-of-sorts-ness. the trailer was hitched up to the back. i had assumed that we were off on one of herself's wood-gathering expeditions but no sooner had we moved off than we pulled up outside the snake-charmers' house. the wheelbarrow was taken off the trailer, the trailer was unhitched and pulled off the pavement onto the drive and herself disappeared from view.
she soon returned, pushing very hard on the wheelbarrow, which had thoughtlessly acquired a flat tyre. in the barrow was a huge pile of soil. herself shovelled the soil into the trailer, while young dave and i watched in growing disbelief. it was quite obvious that the walk was not going to be for a little while. the operation was repeated at ever-increasing intervals, as herself got more and more tired. eventually she ground to a halt and my boy was collected to help hitch the trailer back up. they tugged away at the bit that attaches to the car but it would not budge off the ground.
herself went in and fetched mr snake-charmer. he doubled-up with laughter at the sight of the stricken trailer. then the three of them tried to lift it but it still would not budge.
"why us?" wailed herself, "i only want to grow a few vegetables!"
the trailer was left where it was to await a time when mrs snake-charmer would also be available. my boy also pointed out that removing the wheelbarrow from the top of the pile of soil might be helpful.
those vegetables had just better appreciate all this effort...