So my life has come to this. A new plant-bed full of fresh earth, topped off with quantities of unctuous well-rotted manure, and I’m ecstatic.
That new bed for herbs that we’ve built in the courtyard has been a bit of a problem. I couldn’t lay my hands on any top soil to fill it. Then at last, I was in the right place at the right time. Mireille’s neighbour offered her some. She didn’t want it, but I did, and yesterday, the laden car made two trips down from their out-of-the-way hamlet, la Couronne, stuffed with a dozen or more tubs of rich crumbly red earth.
Did I put those tubs away once I’d emptied the soil out? No. Our manure-providing donkeys are on strike at the moment (they ARE French after all), or rather people have been taking their produce faster than they can deliver. But Jean-Claude, our new friend from the Andorra trip, has come to the rescue, and just after 8.30 this morning, there I was, shovelling the stuff into those over-worked tubs to pop in the car.
The garden’s sorted, manured, I’ve planted spring bulbs, re-organised the strawberry plants, generally slave-driven myself all morning long. And do you know? I’m happy as anything. Could it have anything to do with the sun, I wonder? Here we are, October 6th, and I’m in strappy top and shorts while the thermometer reads 23 degrees.
P.S. If you don’t know why ‘the answer lies in the soil’, you’re not a British child of the 50’s, and you may need to explore the link.