Tuesday 28 July

Today we did serious amounts of hacking and chopping, the magnolia grandiflora was the first victim. Then we moved to the corkscrew hazel. But when there are several working together it does not seem too onerous. There are 3 cats here, the biggest being Thomas, the ginger tom of course. He is a really lovely cat but a total wimp. Because there are new people in the house, he bolts. But I caught him today admiring the flowers, or probably the butterflies among them.

But this evening was a highlight. The first trip to a pub since the beginning of lockdown, and for Tim his first English pub pint since he left for Corsica in February. It is a village local, with a few people sitting outside enjoying the evening sunshine: no masks, and it all felt incredibly normal. There was a point at the beginning of lockdown when I heard that the landlord was selling off all his beer in portable containers, and closing up, that I imagined I would never visit this pub again. And felt very sad. But hey, here we are, and it was really lovely.

Many thanks to the landlord of The Bluebell, Maxey. We all love you dearly.

I have really laughed at this by the local Stamford Arts Centre. Mrs Siddons in lockdown. They have done so well to be so creative, and it’s little places like this which will really suffer in the future. It’s only 18 minutes, but do watch if you can.

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