My newt

Yesterday, I spent some time scything the wild flower patch near the side door.  It looked good until a week ago, but when the poppies and saxifrage finished flowering, suddenly it was a mess.  I scythed about a third of it, which wasn’t all that much but it was hot work and the mother hen with three chicks kept wandering across, probably looking for seeds fallen from the newly-cut plants.  And then I *didn’t get around to* (otherwise known as ‘was too lazy to’) clearing away the debris.  And then it rained heavily in the night and this morning, so it wasn’t until about 5 o’clock when I finally got the barrow and tidied up.

At this point I must insert a warning for those of you who are inexplicably concerned at the sight of pictures of small creatures, because I saw a newt running out of the weeds and towards the house.  Newts, at this time of the year, do not live in water but move onto land.  Unlike frogs, they then have dry skins and they look like little lizards.  I am extremely fond of newts as we had them in the garden of the house where I grew up.  I took photos, which is what I’m warning you of.

The newt hid behind a plant pot by the house and I took its picture before clearing up the rest of the mess, but then it occurred to me that a chicken might kill it, so I went and picked it up and took it to the kitchen garden.  It was quite docile and didn’t try to get away.

Later, Hannah, whose wedding reception is being held on our front field, came with the firework chap and her inlaws-to-be and her dad, to check on the layout of the arrangements.  So all is well there.  There’s plenty of room – there may be anything up to 300 people coming, so we’re really hoping for a fine day.

The Sage took the firework guy (not in a Guy Fawkes sense) and father-in-law across the field to say where he suggested everything went and the rest of us talked about the arrangements.  They wondered what the Sage was saying.  I quoted Mig’s marvellous summing up of him “...on the ball. But only the ball he was playing” and Ian, Hannah’s father and our former neighbour, who knows him very well, thought that was very astute.  And indeed, when Tim the firework guy came back, he sketched what had been suggested and we all agreed that would work splendidly.  “How will the marquee guy know where to erect it?” wondered Hannah.  But it’s all right, that’s the bit of the field that we’ll mow.

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