Notes from the Orchard - August 2018


More Notes from The Orchard – 54

August 2018


What a relief to be able to say “Phew!” without having to mop a dripping brow!  Or shall we have to face another onslaught?


After so many years of poor summers we all longed for a ‘blue sky summer’ but as the years have gone by we discover that coping with the heat is definitely not as easy as it was when we were children. . . I do remember that 40 years ago we left the house in the mornings but were not altogether sure our black and white timber house, surrounded by trees, would be anything but a smoking ruin by the time we arrived home after work.  Not everyone was so lucky at that time when we were living – not in Greece, Canada, Australia or California – but in north Hampshire, England.


Life seems to get more complicated every year.  Politics give us no rest or peace and physical calamities pile one on top of the other.  While some people argue about the reality of ‘climate change’ others are convinced that the current fluctuations in the weather are just the way things are and have been in all the climate history of the world.  I wonder whether the ‘deny-ers’ just describe the Ice Age as being an exceptionally long and difficult spell of weather?


My family has decided that after 30 years my kitchen needs an update – what a horrible thought!  It’s the clearing of all the junk – my aged crockery very rarely used these days, little jars of spices with expiry dates way back in the past, ditto with tins. . .The other day I found an economy pack of tuna to use before end of 2012.  In the cleaning cupboard, nicknamed after a local ironmongers,  I have found almost a dozen pairs of rubber gloves purchased over many years.  Practically all of them have now perished, fingers and thumbs stuck together.  There are the items stacked on high shelves against my will thirty years ago and since then have never been used.  They now all need cleaning because their only job over all these years has been to live as dust and grease accumulators.  Of course, all this clearing has to be done before any of the new installation even gets into the house. . .


I intend to take refuge with those who have decided I need this remodelled kitchen while they do a bit of supervising where really necessary.  I will leave to them the joy of deciding what and how to do it.  I am sure it will all look wonderful!  Be that as it may, I have to ask myself how many spiders will now be dislodged to run riot around the house, especially in the autumn when the whole horrible business will take place?


As good little convent girls we were taught seventy or more years ago to ‘offer it up’ without moaning too much about the convenience or discomfort to help those who were really suffering.  That may sound odd to many people but strangely it does help: you are under the impression you are helping others whose lives are much less happy than yours. . . I shall think of the poor immigrants who would be so happy to have a lovely house with a beautiful modern kitchen then shut up and remember to pray for them and to thank my dear daughters for their help. After all, they are absolutely right about it being time to replace the kitchen!




Sarah Bell


PS - Dear Readers: I know I have forgotten the third part of what I was writing in June and July but I shall come back to that while the kitchen transformation is taking place in September, if I survive!

Katy Bell © 2018