Thursday 26 April 2007

On being fickle

I am so fickle. It’s barely two weeks since we heard we’d lost 'our' house and already I’ve fallen in love twice. It takes me back (most horribly) to when I was at school and would fall head over heels with some pimply youth only to switch affection a week or so later.
The first house sounded a total dream but, as I’ve already told you, went under offer about an hour after I’d seen it. The second was a farmhouse, just outside T. It looked perfect. A bit of land, a few outbuildings, stunning views. Now I should have known that if something looks too good to be true, it usually is. And I should also know that if a house has been on the market since the summer (the trees in full foliage in the particulars were a dead giveaway) there is something wrong. But then again, I reasoned, our poor house has been on for ages and has no bad habits, no hidden horrors.
So, after football, I persuaded Adrian to take us for a peep. We left T and headed out of town, down a rather muddy track.
‘Poo,’ said James and he was right. It stank. Not a good hearty country smell but, James was perfectly accurate, poo, human poo to boot.
‘Sewage works,’ said Adrian.
‘But we’d be a long way away, wouldn’t we?’
We certainly would. The track got smaller and smaller, and muddier and muddier. Now we’re used to mud but this was something else. We climbed and climbed, any thoughts of whisking into town for a pint of milk vanishing by the second. Once you got up here, you would never leave (at least not willingly).
‘I think we’re going into someone’s farmyard,’ worried Adrian (he worries about things like that.)
‘Oh no. Look, it goes up there through that patch of really deep mud.’
Fifteen minutes later we saw the sign for the house. Peeping down the drive, it looked gorgeous. There was even a treehouse. But what the picture hadn’t shown was that there was a huge cowbarn behind the house – and another one off to the side. Heavily populated cowbarns. Several other properties huddled around. We looked at one another. I love cows but having lived a field away from a dairy farm in the past I know they aren’t always great neighbours (you can put me right here, cowgirl as sure yours are divine!) as they always seem to attract huge swarms of flies.
So that was it. We slid back down the track, another dream vanishing in the mist.

Went for a consoling lunch in Woods and gobbled down steak tip sandwiches. Came home and put in a few hours in the ‘garden’ while James and Adrian played rugby on our small patch of flat lawn. In the few months since I’ve been out half our stonework has disappeared under moss. Blink out here on Exmoor and you’ll be covered in moss before you know it. So I tugged away a load of it (and can hear you moss-less people wailing!) and also (wail again!) tons of foxgloves which also grow like weeds.

Adrian is about to cook a Thai curry, the fire is burning high (constructed very well by James) and I intend to pour myself a huge brandy mac. Adrian brought me back a bottle of duty-free brandy and (you have to laugh) what he thought was perfume.
‘Damn expensive, this stuff,’ he said as he handed it over.
‘Er, darling. It’s lovely, but did you realise – it’s not perfume; it’s deodorant!’
He was stunned. God knows what he’d have thought if he’d had to pay for real perfume!’. Ah bless.

1 comment:

countrymousie said...

I do like the sound of Adrian - never live on a farm unless its you own - you will never have control over the smell otherwise.
Farmers cant smell the smell you see.