June brings tulips, lilies roses......

Posted by Jeni in Ad Infinitum | 1 July 2019

June happened in the blinking of an eye. We watched the honey bees slurp the nectar out of all the blue flowers and counted the worm holes in the lawn. I planted up radishes, rocket, spinach and two tomato plants, refugees from Devon.

There were birthdays galore; surrogate sons, nephews, granddaughters, godchildren, brothers. They all got cards which I bought from the little shop in the village. I buy them en masse. Write them up, leave them on the dresser beside the succulents then post them in chronological order. July is even more packed; the 2nd is my oldest boy friend from college, 3rd the man that changed my life who doesn't talk to me any more, 4th one of my favourite bosses, 5th two of my dearest girlfriends, 7th my wonderful German acupuncturist, 9th an actor, 12th a musical director who introduced me to Billy Holiday and told me to stand still when I sung, and then a respite before the onslaught of August.

So in between my visits to the Post Office we drove to Devon, then Cornwall, back to Devon again then on to Goudhurst. Our first Devonian stop off was in an American diner where they served hamburgers to a soundtrack of Buddy Holly against a backdrop of black and white photos of the Rat Pack. We arrived in the garden of an artist who paints delicious water colours and remembers the past. She sways with music and bemoans the arthritis in her spine, she has a new telly from her son that's big enough to see without my Varifocals and a big bed with a soft mattress where we slept under cool cotton sheets. We left Devon after a breakfast of soft wholemeal bread, home made marmalade and cherished hugs. On Midsummers day we drove past Stonehenge, as the sun moved up in the sky and the crowds built up. We sped past them arriving at the Eden project by noon.

The car-parks have fruit names, we backed into a space in Plum 2, then walked down the winding path to the Biodomes. A sound check for Nile Rogers echoed through the potato plots and herby crops. The Rain Forest biome was hot and steamy. The higher we got the the warmer it became - over a swinging bridge into the canopy, and a moment of standing over jets that pumped out 'clouds' of cool water. A group of Philippine women had travelled from California to their forest in the middle of Cornwall. They talked of flowers and traditions back home and giggled over their homeland being brought to the English West Country. We drunk Baobab juice and had lunch in the Mediterranean biome. Sitting next to a sign that told us not to feed the birds that hopped between the tables. The old git put crumbs on his shoulder until I scolded him....

We took the land train, open carriages pulled by a tractor, then the bus to Plum 2. We drove to a delicious hotel run by an Italian Basil Fawlty. We paid an extra tenner for a room bigger than our cottage with a carpeted bathroom and windows that opened into Virginia Creeper. We went out for dinner in the highest pub in Cornwall, back to some telly then slumbered in a bed the size of Dartmoor. Breakfast was continental unless we added eggs and bacon which cost extra.

The sat-nav took us to Bigbury-by-the-sea back in Devon, where the parking machines were broke, the cash machines non-existent, and the locals unwilling to help. So we drove off to our second lot of Devon friends. Through high hedges and into a village 7 miles from Totnes, we ate nibbles under an umbrella in the garden, then home made curry in the kitchen and then set about playing Bananagrams all night. Four adults cheating and screaming - dodging death.

After a barnstorming breakfast of bacon between fresh sour dough bread we opened the Bananagram bag and shouted at each other until we left to visit the first Devonians' art exhibition in Totnes, back to her partners house which strained under mountains of objet d'art, a very loud stereo system and magnificent potted plants. We ate scones with jam and cream put on simultaneously thus bypassing the argument of what comes first the dairy or the conserve. Then at four thirty we slipped out of the West Country and arrived in Goudhurst at 9.30, collecting the daughter from her godmother and arrived home in time for some herbal tea and a family chat.

Today me and him hooked up with the grandchildren and their mother for a casting in London. Lots of noisy actors all looking like grans and grandpas, with well groomed hair and pretty children, and us looking as scruffy as you like. We left having improvised in front of the camera for a job that nobody has a clue about. We had tea in Soho then raced each other home. We got the 5.58 from Charing Cross, they caught the 5.57 from Victoria. They put the key in the lock as we put the key in our lock. And so today finished with a draw.

We have had a perfect bustling June, even though the leaders of the free world are playing silly buggers. I think Stormzy should be Prime Minister, Sir David Attenborough King and Leila Parker should be made queen of everything because she lives next door, is a wonderful mother has created an amazing charity 'Baby 2 BaBy' for families without and is part of the younger generation who care. Oh that bungling Boris and hopping Hunt really cared but enough like my delicious neighbour. It's July now, a new moon tomorrow and new beginnings.

Jeni Barnett tells of her scrumptious time at Good Food Live in her first audiobook! Download NOW from iTunes

Post your comments

(If you haven't left a comment here before, there may be a delay before your comment is shown. Thanks for waiting.)

Note: Your email address is required, but will not be published.






Copyright 2007, Jeni Barnett. Website produced by Chopstix.