This morning we have another mini garden visit, these are small groups of friends, who after lockdown are really desperate to get out, and we offer somewhere to visit that doesn’t feel too risky. I am up early to prepare for the visit and I spend some time tying up tomatoes and cucumbers, watering, and dead heading roses before they arrive. This lovely little group of ladies are retired teachers from our local primary school who had the joy of teaching our ‘delightful’ daughters. All the girls were at home and it was a brilliant opportunity for a reunion and catch up and the girls then walked around the garden with us, pointing out the things they’ve been involved in. It is really heart-warming to hear them proudly discussing the various projects and coming up with new crazy ideas for the future…this is what it is all about, passing things on. I receive a comment from our visitors that I have had from other people I have known a long time… “we never knew all this was going on when you were coming in to do things in school, (somehow I had ended up chairman of the infant’s school parents fundraising group!) we had no idea!”. People have often expressed surprise, firstly, that the garden even exists... “I’ve lived in Harefield all my life and I never knew this was here!”, and secondly, that Patrick and I were living this unknown crazy second existence whilst trying to work and bring up a family. Looking back, I now realise that when colleagues at work asked me and “what are you doing this weekend” and I might answer “digging a septic tank” or “building a roof” that they probably didn’t take me seriously!
After our lovely ladies depart, we have another pair of extremely welcome visitors. Emma and baby Bobby, Emma is not only a very dear friend but also our hairdresser!!! Emma was visiting partly socially but also professionally…thank goodness! Grandad’s beard wins the prize for the biggest beard in the family, he now resembles Father Christmas and is having difficulty finding his mouth! Grandad loves Emma and little Bobby (Grandad is also called Bob) and he sits in the garden with us which is lovely, and Emma, wearing PPE, gives him a good trim, including his eyebrows which were also very bushy! Grandad now looks like a completely different person and then it is Patrick’s turn. Patrick had begun to look like he should be in a band, his hair was very long and his beard was almost as big as Grandad’s. All three girls have naturally long hair which is now even longer than usual. Emma has time to cut Meave and Aideen’s hair before she has to leave, promising to return on Monday to cut mine and Diane’s hair. Emma says she likes cutting hair outside, although, it is a bit breezy and the increasing pile of hair keeps blowing away. I gather it up as much as I can and add it to the compost, ‘waste not want not’, most things make good compost and maybe the birds will take it for their nests.
On our earlier walk around the garden I noticed some adorable plump little brown birds hopping rather dozily around the compost heaps which I think are fledgling robins. This makes sense as this was the area where Aideen and I were so loudly scolded by adult robins in recent weeks, probably because we were too close to their nests. Slightly less adorable is Bella, who has circumnavigated my garden chair barrier and dug up my new bedding plants again.