It seems an age ago now, since those heady days of having time to sit with a cool beer on a warm evening, looking out onto the Hagia Sophia.
We had the Sunday off when we got home, and apart from tidying up and watering our own garden, headed off down to the allotment to do some much needed weeding and watering. There had been no rain at all during our time away, and blazing sunshine every day, and the ground was so dry that it had cracked!
The broad beans, although not as advanced as on some other plots, were still alive at least.
The runner beans, a little stunted and slug damaged, were at least alive and starting to climb the canes.
We still have loads of large seedlings at home to transfer down here. Kohl Rabi, Ruby Chard, Beetroot, Brussel Sprouts (and a red variety of the same), Butternut Squash, Patty Pans, Dwarf French Beans, Borlotti Beans, Tomatoes, Pak Choi and some others that escape my fuddled memory at this time.
The ground was caked as hard as rock, and it took a couple of hours to break it up a bit, which after a break away in which we had done nothing more physical that lifting a camera, reminded us of the work to come.
We're not really sure quite how it happened. Before we left, every garden was tidy and under control, and on our return, grass is long and flowering, hedges have become desperately in need of a trim, weeds have appeared out of nowhere, and all this on top of the Queens jubilee.
The mower and other machinery have been working overtime this last week. There have been 9pm finishes most days, and there is still around a third of the gardens to attend to. It's not going to be easy, as this week is cut short due to two days of bank holidays. At least all hanging baskets, that had been previously ordered, have managed to be picked up and put up.
And all the bedding plants have now gone in. The last of these brought smiles of amusement from the residents of one property, who stumbled across us at 9.30pm in their garden, sprawled across the grass with trowels in hand. They were settling down for the night, we hadn't gone home yet.
Of course, there was a mountain of rubbish from the week, and due to the dry weather, Eco had it's damping sprinklers going, which made everything wet and VERY smelly....including me! While waiting on the weighbridge, I thought that the scene around me resembled Thunderdome.
Our last job on Saturday was to tidy up the new landscaping at the house in Sandbanks. Everything is growing nicely, but as I have said earlier, the whole story will come when the garden is finished. For now though, a glimpse of the utility area. We even had an email request from someone who had seen it, and have invited us to take a look at their own garden with a view to the same.
It's now Monday morning, and the first of the two bank holiday days. We are exhausted, and quite daunted by the weeks work due to start on Wednesday. Yesterday was spent firstly sitting in a nice cafe/bar in Westbourne called Circo Lounge, talking and drinking tea. Then it was an afternoon of cold vodka martinis as we watched the royal jubilee flotilla, cruise down the Thames.
Rather glad to be in the comfort of our lounge though, as the weather took a turn for the worse. It didn't appear to perturb queenie though, the royals are made of stiffer stuff.
We had planned to work today, and only take tomorrow off, so that we can celebrate the Queens jubilee alongside others, but everywhere there is a certain stillness and quiet, and I don't think that noisy machinery would go down well at this point. And so, work is pear shaped, time is against us, and in two weeks we will probably be back to normal, and so for now lets go and have a fry up and prepare for the jollifications tomorrow. TTFN