It was windy but dry, this morning, so Wince came along. For once, I had a list of jobs and didn’t ask him what needed to be done. I had the new fanbelt for the wheeled trimmer and he’s continuing to remove glass from one greenhouse, to put it in the other two. It’s not worth replacing broken panes in that third one, because the end has dropped a bit, so the stress on a few of the panes makes them break again.
The third job was to get Pillock’s new home ready for him. I have no idea how Wince managed to move it by himself, but he prefers to manage single-handedly, so I left him to it and it’s in place behind the annexe now. In the meantime, I left to catch up with Rose and then go on over to Ronan. I found he’d done some mowing too, he is incredibly hard-working and such a nice man. He’s never asked for an increase in wages, but I do insist, every couple of years.
Ronan has never, for 20 years, been that keen on using the car if he can help it. So we drove to the park and ride and took the bus into Norwich, then walked up to the castle. There’s been a massive renovation project over the last 2 years and it’s going to take a lot longer yet. So many of the galleries have been shut, but they’ve moved what they can into the others, so there’s a reasonable representation of what they have. I have free family entry because I am a paid supporter, I trust they’ve reduced the price for other visitors, but there was still plenty to entertain us for a couple of hours.
We hadn’t had lunch, but luckily the café, which is tiny at present – I hadn’t realised this – had food for us, the children and I had excellent home-made quiches and Ronan had a pasty, later we had cake. There wasn’t much else, though we’d have managed with cheese scones otherwise. All the staff were absolutely delightful and very welcoming and chatty. It occurred to me, a bit later, that a hands-on father of small children attracts warm attention from friendly people. We certainly were very well looked after, other visitors were friendly and, though we made sure she wasn’t a nuisance, a happy 2-year-old running about giggling was looked on indulgently. She never touched anything she shouldn’t do, which was mentioned – so many children run straight to the toys on the gift stand, said the delightful waitress, but little Perdita and her brother were very good.
I took them to see the Saxon man with the dirty feet, who Squiffany used to make a beeline for when she was little, and Rufus was intrigued by the Egyptian mummies. His father explained that they do not walk and they’re not spooky, but real people from thousands of years ago. He was even more interested in the little mummified cat, the baby crocodile and the falcon, who are not encased in sarcophagi but are just there, wrapped. We looked for the Delft tile with the hare on and inspected the small amount of Lowestoft china on show. There was plenty to see.
Perdita ran out of patience on the way home, though a lot of cuddling and crooning kept her quiet most of the way. She must have been exhausted, bless her. I certainly was, by the time I got home. We’d been lucky, it was fairly dry, if windy, while we were out but it started raining after that. I’d wanted to feed the cats, shut up the chickens and have an early bath, but my Eloise cat wanted a cuddle, so we fell asleep together instead. It poured torrentially later, so I waited for a bit before going out. I’ll deal with putting Pillock in his new accommodation tomorrow. I’ll ask Wink if there are any particular chickens she would like to join him, otherwise I’ll choose three quite small ones that don’t have names, so that she can name them if she wants to.