Tuesday, 3 March 2009

camp coffee and romance

Boy and I had a lovely walk this morning down to the village shop to collect our daily newspapers, snowdrops & aconites lining the hedge bottoms and the allotments at the corner of Milksop Lane looking all spruced up ready for the planting of the coming season's vegetable crop. I noticed, as l stopped to re-tie my shoe laces in a double bow, that all the allotments have been taken this year, which is an excellent sign of the industrious nature of our little community and bodes well for the Village Fete and Produce Show.

The Post Office was, by the time l arrived, all of a flutter, Mrs Blacker had swapped the hot chocolate for cups of Camp coffee and chocolate digestives as the weather has become decidedly milder of late. Anyway, as l entered there was a notable silence only broken by the sound of Old Blaster sucking his coffee noisily from, behind which Mrs Blacker had solidly positioned herself proudly handing me an opened issue of the Midshire Daily Post carefully folded to reveal a large colour photo of my dear brother beaming from ear to ear under the caption 'Rural Gent wants a Wife'. Everything sprang into place, my charming brother was obviously the centre of attention here in the village and was, in no uncertain terms, being dissected in minute detail by the seated villagers who between sips of strong coffee and dunking of biscuits were thoroughly enjoying the juicy article.

Without saying a word or taking the proffered cup of coffee, l sat down with thud onto one of the rickety wooden chairs, pulled out my glasses from my barbour pocket and began to read, completely oblivious to the 6 pairs of elderly eyes that watched me with the greatest of anticipation.

The article, which was on page 2 of the Women's Post, had been written by one Cheri Startangler, and featured the 6 gentlemen who had been chosen, together with accompanying manly photos. The ages ranged from 25 to 74, all single and with some tie to the countryside, so for example, we had some farmers, a huntsman, a gamekeeper, a rural GP and then my brother. it was observed & commented upon by Mrs de la Pole, that l re-read the paragraphs concerning my brother's details at least 3 times if not 4.

Old Blaster broke the silence by loudly stating that Monks was at least 82 if not 83 as he was 3 years younger than him so where did the 74 bit come from? Mrs de la Pole erupted in a violent attack of the giggles as she read out from the article, ' this charming, young at heart gentleman is searching for a younger woman to help bring the joy back into his lonely life. She must be slim, attractive, sound in wind and limb and finally be an excellent cook capable of cooking bread and butter pudding and other nursery foods'. Miss Knox sniffed loudly, stood up, smoothed her tweed skirt down and left after purchasing a first class stamp, envelopes, writing paper & a bottle of Parker Quinck ink in bottle blue.


muddyboots said...

So exciting, do keep us posted on what happens next to your brother.

Un Peu Loufoque said...

Oh dear what will that boy do next I do hope he doesnt get scooped up by some flippertygibbet young thing who will give him a heart attack! You must vet all candidates with care dear!

Pondside said...

UPL is quite right - make sure that you are there to help with the decision-making. After all, this may be the young person who will be choosing your (and Monk's) old age care home!

Fantastic Forrest said...


With whom, I wonder, is Miss Knox going to correspond?