Today’s lecture was quite brilliant. The subject sounded a bit dry, to tell the truth – embroideries and decorative schemes of Mary, Queen of Scots and Bess of Hardwick – but it was spectacularly well researched, very well illustrated, delivered with a humour and lightness of touch that belied the scholarly detail and, as befits an experienced lecturer, he finished bang on time. In fact, I bent LT’s ear most of lunchtime with the details of it all.
We went to the Castle inn for lunch, a place we’re always fond of as it’s where our party had dinner the night before our wedding. We both felt we’d chosen well today, too, with Tim’s smoked salmon and potted shrimps and my mussels. I came home and had a nap, having slept particularly poorly last night – this is for no better reason than I’d slept well the night before.
A few minutes after I woke up, Rose came in, delicately enquiring if the house were for sale? No??? I said. There was a For Sale sign by the hedge at the bottom of the drive. I stalked down, with the others scuttling to keep up, and uprooted it infuriately. The house and garden opposite, on the corner site, was sold about three years ago to a builder, who has knocked the house down and built three properties in its place. The For Sale sign is for the bungalow opposite my house. There’s plenty of room for the sign there, but the agents thought it would be a good idea to put it right by my hedge. I chucked it over the fence to where it should be and if it goes up again I’ll have words with the agent. I’m a bit bemused by the price, I must say – nearly half a million pounds for a four bedroom bungalow? It doesn’t matter to me, I’m no Nimby and have never raised any objection to any development, and if the builder makes a good profit then good luck to him. But it’s startling, all the same.
When I went into the henhouse this morning, the bucket I’d left under the feeder was tipped to one side, so clearly the rats had tried to get at the food. They didn’t succeed and putting it there every evening is quite an easy precaution, but the feeder is sold as rat-proof and it evidently isn’t.