Tuesday, 5 January 2010
The neighbours and the land
10th September 2009.
Today I met two neighbours and a future neighbour; a builder, who has bought the cottage and land along the lane. I say neighbours, you can't exactly chat over the fence unless you're prepared to walk a bit.
One neighbour is a farmer. He's to the point. He said 'Yer hedges are a mess, yer land is worse. Yer needs to get cattle in.' We didn't get much more from him except to offer his opinion that the last owners were idiots who frittered away money. 'Well,' I assured him, 'We won't be like that. We've got no money now we've bought this house!' 'Shame,' he repled 'thought I was livin' next t'millionaires.' Then he walked off.
The next neighbours are fab. Fellow drinkers I'd say, we'll be friends whether they like it or not!
The builder-neighbour came and laughed at my poo-smelling utility room. He assured us it will be transformed by Christmas. I'm relieved because currently it makes me retch and we have to open the window to throw the spin dryer's extraction hose out. I imagine that this won't be wildly practical in winter.
We have six stables in an American Barn. We have no pets and certainly no horses. I have no plans to get horses unlike my six year old. A lonely horse lives in one of our fields; a tenant from the previous owners. He comes with owners who bake us cakes and who pay weekly dues. His owner gave me the telephone number of Land Man: 'He can do anything.' she said.
Land Man is wiry, strong, ten years my junior. He drives a pickup and has chocolate brown labradors. He knows about land and livestock. He will cut the fields but suggests I get cattle in first. (I'm wondering whether they all expect me to buy a herd. Is there such a thing as a cow-shop?) He has given me the number of the best hedge-cutter in the land. Land Man will harrow our menage. I am learning a whole new language.
[Update 2014: 5 years on and our new website is launched here come visit us online.]