Time and patience


You think it is all over – it isn’t yet. It has seemed to take forever to get our new bathroom installed. It has not of course but there is a lot more to it than I thought. Everything is in place now but with a few more minor adjustments needed.

The biggest adjustment though is me. I need to get used to this strange new room. I do not recognise it with its smooth shining grey walls and its up-to-the minute shower and taps. A slight turn or light touch and it springs to life. Even the flush is automatic.

I have to forget the familiar dripping bath tap which I could turn with my big toe and the crack in the sink that wound around islands like the River Severn. The frog soap dish is redundant now and will never again fall and swim in the bath water. I must go with the flow so to speak and drag myself into this modern world.

My friend down the lane is planning a new kitchen. I sat at her table where I have often sat over the last twenty or so years. I looked at her warm oak finish units and heard how they are not modern enough. Modern goes from floor to ceiling and maximizes space. The radiator warming my hands is to be replaced with shining vertical pipes. Walls will be knocked through for ease of access to the little pantry and the whole thing will be unrecognisable like our bathroom. I did not say anything, but she is in for a long journey, mind you she is younger than me and is looking forward to the change.

The season is changing too and we are trying to keep up. There are still blackberries in the freezer from last year’s autumn garden and our rhubarb is ready. This is not supposed to happen I like to empty the freezer by the end of April but we have become distracted and so the autumn blackberries have clashed with the ready rhubarb.

Mr T covered the rhubarb clump early in the year with an old dolly tub that was left lolling in the garden. I remember my mother’s zinc dolly tub in the wash house at the back of our farmhouse. The clothes went in there with water from what she called a ‘copper’ – she lit a fire underneath to heat the water. What a life our dolly has seen and now it is being used for something useful in different times.

The tub has kept the shocking red rhubarb sticks in the dark and has forced them into tender stems just right for a delicious crumble.

(Taken from my column in the Shropshire Star)

The old dolly tub still has its uses


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