We set off on Wednesday morning to Montacute House in Wiltshire. The van engine had been making some odd siren like noises, the sort of noises that meant that an engine should blow up, but all was running smoothly, and there were no system warning lights coming on, and so we did what we do best, and ignored it for the time being. The van was booked into the garage for Friday anyway to fix the problem, and we always had the AA if we broke down. Half way there and a grinding noise added to the problem, and so we thought it best to turn around and try to drop it off at the garage early. By the time we got there, we were turning heads with the melee coming from the engine, but we just made it, with a final screeching as we pulled into the forecourt. A gentle and kind smile from the garage owner met us, with the immediate news that the turbo charger had blown up. We resigned ourselves with the thought of being without a vehicle for most of the rest of our holiday, and with yet another huge garage bill to face. It was huge, in fact £839.00, and the van would be out of action until Friday evening, which all in all wasn't too bad.
“Cleansing your environment is a ritual means of also cleansing your mind” Dalai Lama
A statement that has always held true for me when things get stressful and difficult. We had adventures planned for the holiday, but now we were housebound for a short while, and so time to immerse ourselves in a little tidying of the house and garden, something that usually takes a back seat. Amanda disappeared among the shrubs in the garden, secateurs and bin in hand, whilst I headed to a long overdue clear up of one of the tool sheds.
I started by clearing some of the floor of one of the tool sheds, and the plan was to make enough space to house loads of wine making gear, dozens of empty bottles, and the spare demi-johns.
Outside, and the tomatoes are doing well under the kitchen window.
The Nisparo are actually ripening in the sunshine and heat that we are getting.
We cleared the end of the garden. It's our cool and shady spot on hot days, and there was so much 'stuff' just dumped there over the last few months, that it was getting quite depressing. We had to leave a little room for the plant hospital, but hopefully whatever has survived so far will now recover with a little more TLC.
The tool shed ended a little more ordered, if not completely sorted. That will come when I tackle the other shed, but at the moment the bulk of that is taken up with my Triumph Trophy.
The Aloe is loving the sun and the heat.
The greatest gift of the garden is the restoration of the five senses. ~Hanna Rion
As are the Salvias generally.
Eventually, Amanda started to appear, as order was brought to the garden.
Even our little Phoenecian sailor seemed happier.
Gardening always restores the mind and soul when negative things are taking over the mind. There aren't many life problems that I haven't had to face at some point or another, and it has always been working with plants that has kept me sane, and focussed my thoughts more positively and constructively.
Two days later and all was done. Heck, we had even painted the gutter down pipes on the house.
It was a warm Thursday evening, and the table was set for a picnic in our newly restored cool area.
Hobie joined us as usual, and was treated to a little of Amandas trout terrine. Judging by the frantic cleaning he then set to, I think he enjoyed it.
We were relaxed, and feeling ok about the fact that the cost of the van was going to set us back in other areas. We just sat in quiet comfort, tired from the work we had immersed ourselves in, and stared up through the Acacia tree as we talked.
Hobie? Well, it was just all too much for him!
To forget how to dig the earth and to tend the soil is to forget ourselves. ~Mahatma Gandhi