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Monday 26 October 2020

The kind people at No 25

In autumn last year, outside No 25 on a nearby street, there was a small, blue plastic table which was covered with patty pan squashes and a sign saying "Help yourself".  So I did.  I helped myself to several, brought them home and roasted them with homegrown tomatoes to make soup which I froze and ate during the winter.  It was delicious!

When I was writing my Christmas cards I had been enjoying the soup and I thought the kind donor of the squash might like one of my home-made cards but I didn't know their name so I just wrote, "To the kind people at No 25" and thought no more of it.

Last week my door bell rang and there stood a lady I had never seen before and she was holding a marrow and a butternut squash.  She was the kind lady from 25.  She had saved my card (I always print my name and address) and she had been so delighted to get it that she had brought me these gifts.

There really are kind people at No 25.

Monday 12 October 2020

Motherly love and worry (Guest post by Jack)

 Hi Everyone

 As you will see by my header, I’ve got two things to write about today,

 Some time ago I had an unexpected lodger, someone I called Penelope.  She was a baby pigeon.  One night I let my little dog out for her evening constitutional and she started to bark at something hiding behind some potted plants so I called her in.  Next morning I found what she had been barking at as my dog was escorting a little bird around my garden!  I could see what had happened: the bird had flown out of the nest which was in a tree next door.  She had hit my bedroom window and must have hurt herself because she sheltered in my back garden.  I treat all of God’s creatures with the same kindness (including the Vicar) so I put a bowl of milk and some food on the ground for Penelope (but the Vicar gets hers on the table).  Every morning the first thing I would do was to make sure Penelope was still with me and OK.  I kept my eye on her throughout the day and, what a nice surprise, I got her Mum to come three or four times a day to regurgitate and feed her baby.  If that isn’t mother love, I can’t think of anything more wonderful.  We humans don’t realise sometimes how the animal world works.  Anyway, on the seventh day Penelope tried to fly.  The poor little thing flew straight into the same window.  She must have recovered because on the eighth day she was waiting on my bird bath when I went out to make sure she was alright.  Penelope bobbed her head twice as much as to say, “thank you” then flew off.  Those eight days were some of the best I’ve had for a while.  I had someone to talk to in a morning.  God speed, Penelope, take care. 

 Now to the other thing, WORRY.  This is about someone else I care about.   As you may know, the vicar and I phone each other every day.   Sometimes hers is the only voice I hear all day and I look forward to our call no end.  As I’ve found it is a very lonely life living on my own and that twenty or thirty minutes with the Vicar is great.  It’s so nice to hear someone’s voice.  So, if any of you bloggers know of anyone living on their own near you or you have relatives or anyone else, give them a call.  Let them know someone out there cares about them.  Getting back to this worry subject, one day I rang the vicar at the usual time, around 8.30am.  I got no answer.  I kept ringing every five minutes until 9.15am by which time the tears were flowing because I was upset thinking something had happened to my vicar friend.   I rang the lady next door as I had her number in case of emergencies.  I asked her to go and have a look if she could see the vicar.  No, she couldn’t see her.  Right, I decided, I would get in my car and drive over thinking Mary would be on the floor or something.  By this time, I was out of my mind with worry!  The lady rang me back just as I was going to my car.  She remembered the key safe which I’d put near the back door.  She went and tapped in the numbers and let herself in, had a good look around then phoned me to say there was no sign of her, knowing this would ease my mind a bit.  Not long after my phone rang again – guess who it was.  The Vicar had been warned by the lady next door that I wasn’t very happy and I was on the warpath.  As soon as I heard the Vicar’s voice I burst into tears but when the tears abated, my, I didn’t hold back.  I really let rip at her.  But one good thing came out of it, our back-up system worked with help from the lady next door.  Thank you, Kate. 

 On a lighter note, one morning we were chatting and my little dog was barking so Mary asked, What’s the matter with Millie?”  I didn’t say but spelt it out that she wanted to go for a walk.  So, what did the Vicar do?  She shouted as loud as she could, “WALKIES”.  Millie’s ears pricked up and she barked even louder. 

 So, as you can see, the Vicar’s not an angel all the time.

 I hope you’re all staying free from the virus.  We’ve all got the Lord on our side and I’ve got the Vicar on my side.

 Love to everyone, Jack

(Very brief note from the Vicar.  When I'd gone AWOL I was with my cousin whose mum died earlier this year and I'm supporting her as well.  But I'm still sorry I caused him so much worry.)