Well, not quite but I do have a mat of crocuses - you can't call it a carpet because apparently I have mice in my garden and according to Howard, they were hungry and ate my crocuses. Did they have shovels, since the crocuses had been nicely covered with soil and turf ? So here and there a nice little batch of yellow, white and purple and in other places nothing. Crocus bulbs. I wonder if it's anything like onions? So now I probably have mice with bad breath in the back.
Better than rats. We did have a rat at one point when the new school buildings were in construction across the way. I don't know whether the builders or the children left food around but one took to sitting on my patio like it had stopped at the drive in at Mcdonald's.
And one night there I was eating dinner and drinking Shiraz and writing on my lap top in my little garden room and eager eyes gazed at me from the double glass doors. It was a fox. I think it was badly hurt, perhaps it had been run over. When I opened the door it retreated to the back of the garden so there was obviously no way I could catch it, take it to the vet. So I went to the fridge and took out two cooked M&S chicken breasts and put them on the patio and it came and ate them and limped away. I still keep dog food in, hoping it may come back.
Am I the only person in the world who never sits in the garden? It's very pretty out there, lots of grass, the flowers I chose and Howard makes it all so pretty. I sit inside and look at it from there. I did buy garden chairs and a table and a parasol but somehow when you're on your own it seems so bloody daft to sit in the garden. When I'm in it it has the same appeal as a morgue.
When I go to my caravan I sit on my balcony but only when the people in the caravans in front and to the side are there. Mostly they are and it's a lot more sociable at the caravan. In Durham I have to go out for companionship. At the caravan I can see my neighbours around.
Living on your own is hard work but I would kill before I lived with anybody else. And let's be honest nobody has offered!
My caravan site is opening this month and I am very excited about going up there and cleaning and setting up for the summer. I get pheasants outside and sheep and cattle when the grass is thick and long. There are blackbirds and blue tits and wrens and Jake, the little Jack Russell who lives next door.
Every year I plan to do lots of things and then all I do is sit on my balcony and read and drink tea or cold white wine. I don't read half as much at home. There my caravan waits for me. We call her Ruby. I have a library, most of them books from the charity shop in Stanhope. People in the dale are amazing readers. You can get everything.
I'm hoping for a good summer, so that I can sit and dream while the pheasants plod through the fields and the summer evenings are pink and purple when the sun sets and I think about my mam and dad and their families, the places where they worked and the pub where my parents met and the days when my dad's motorbike used to roar up the dale before they were married. I feel closer to them when I'm up there, almost like time is endless.