Saturday, 6 July 2013

Bottle cottage, the reason why...

I am so pleased I didn't buy.
Picture the scene,
the weather was not dissimilar 
from today's.
Warm, with acres of sky, the blue,
 enough to make a flotilla
of matelots a new bell-bottomed suit.
The sun shone low over fields groaning with
wheat fit to burst.
H.E Bates couldn't have painted with words 
a more idyllic Kentish countryside.
For me it was love at first sight.
The fecund woman, with belly full of no more than a tadpole
size baby, I took to instantly.
The walls of the cottage were full of her art... 
scantily-clad Ma Larkins, slithered off the walls and
into my soul.
No matter the kitchen resembled a broom cupboard,
the bedrooms would have been palatial...
to a mouse.
The garden was the size of a hen's handkerchief.
Then a short way off,
 an allotment which was full to overflowing.
In my mind's eye it was mine.
Ted, on pain of death said nothing,
as instructed!
He, I could tell... knew it wasn't practical!
Lots of us wanted it, 
the couple were going back to 
New Zealand to produce a Kiwi baby.
I put in my offer which was not enough,
I upped it...
but as luck would have it,
another was in a better financial shape than me.
Although, she wanted me to have it 
and argued my case with her man. 
He was adamant, they should play safe.
And who could blame him?
Broken hearted, I thought 
I'll never find another as sweet. 
That is until I found here.

Sitting in the shade of the magnolia,
with Lettice in the last days of her life.
This wonderful garden has been
her joy, her domain; 
no matter she's been shouted at over the years,
as she's sat in the herbaceous border.

When I first viewed the cottage 
the garden was so overgrown 
we had no idea of its size.

She phoned much later to ask
if I was still interested.
Sadly I said no, with the rider of, 
'As it has turned out I've found a much 
better size-wise buy.'
I often think of that wonderful
couple and their child of
ten summers.

Ted has said many times,
that as my IFA,
he would have found a way of
making me see the error of
my rose-tinted view of the cottage set 
in the undulating fields of ripe corn,
in that magical summer of 2003.

Yesterday, we had a scare with Lettice,
her days are rapidly coming to an end.
I carried her up to be with us in the garden:
her garden.
Slowly she tottered around, reacquainting
herself with the sights and smells.
Happy to be back patrolling her patch, 
as only a collie can.
For her sake I am pleased
Bottle Cottage, wasn't meant to be.



  1. Sometimes our hearts rule our heads and somehow fate intervenes. I remember falling in love with a tiny house, terribly impractical but something about it drew me to it, alas the owner's decided to withdraw it from sale. I often think of what might have been as it was in a different area. Hope Lettice is okay, the hot weather will exhaust her. Jayne x

    1. Another relaxing day in the garden for us all. It is so lovely to see her laying cool on the grass... Queen of all she surveys.


  2. Enjoy every precious minute. I shall be thinking of you.x

    1. I will Elaine and thank you for thinking of us.


  3. I'm so glad you three found your Ideal Home after all - it sounds idyllic! Hope poor Lettice is coping with the heat - maybe it soothes her achey bones.

    1. Yes, Nilly, we are all really content here. Lettice I'm pleased to say has rallied and is now quite perky. Ted is taking her today to the vets for a manicure and general MOT. Our vet is the loveliest vet EVER, Lettice, needless to say doesn't like going. I stay home because like the big girl's blouse I am I transfer my fears to her. I am going to be with her at the end though, just hope I can hold it together for her sake.