A lot can happen in a week. A tsunami of the plague could gather its second wind. A Thetford could explode in the heat. A boat could be sold. A dream could finally end.
And sometimes dreams need to end, because, from a financial perspective, sometimes we need to wake up.
We sold the boat – our Mouse Boat – to an extremely pleasant girl and her equally extremely pleasant parents from Gloucester, at almost half the price we’d originally intended, because sometimes a bandage is best torn off quickly to minimise the distress.
There were a lot of interested viewers, and for a couple of days the towpath at the apostrophe-less Potters Brook had never been so busy. But it was Debra who got it in the end. (Sorry Max. I know I’ve apologised repeatedly, but I always feel guilty about these matters. If we hear of any other bargain basement boats going we will definitely let you know.)
The boat needed a clean. The spiders needed evicting. The Thetford needed emptying. But it all happened so quickly. The end often does. It seemed so strange leaving the boat this afternoon with the back doors open and people we barely knew still onboard.
But that’s how it goes. I don’t think we could have sold it to nicer people if we’d tried and I hope it all goes well for them.
Now we stuck in the Spinney, landlubbers again. It’s not so bad in the Spinney. There are lots of trees and hedges and squirrels and foxes and hedgehogs and stuff. It’s its own self-contained village, a bit like the one in the 1960’s television series ‘The Prisoner’ in many respects, only without the psychotic weather balloon. It’s quiet here, almost comatose, and what neighbours we do see are friendly enough – not too friendly, not the sort who are in and out of your house all day long when you just want to get on with something else, but the sort who say ‘Hello’, tell you the latest local gossip (within a range of three or four houses) and then quietly continue with whatever they were doing before you interrupted their day. Which is how I like it.
It’s going to take some time before I get used to not worrying about the weather, the ropes, the bilges, the spiders, the licence fee, the Thetford…but time is something we appear to have in copious amounts here. I might go mad. Everybody needs a hobby. The Spinney isn’t a place where people embark on exciting new lives. It’s the sort of place where people quietly fade away…