Saturday 23rd May
On my last trip home, just two week ago but it seems longer, one of the chores was mowing the lawn; and of course that will be a task to do in a week’s time when I am back again. I used to have a caravan at Walton for a few years before I bought the house there, and again mowing the lawn around our van was one of my weekend chores. So, why do we do it? Simple, because we love the grass when it is mown in nice even strips. I particularly like the smell of new mown grass, it is the smell I most associate with Summer.
We have met so many people out here in France who have fallen for the lure of a big place in the country, and when you travel through France you realize just how much land there is. Prices here are so low too that for two or three hundred thousand euros you can buy a large farmhouse with outbuildings and many acres of grass. And then the problem starts – mowing it. And even with a ride-on petrol mower this can take ages. We keep hearing stories of whole days taken just mowing the grass.
In the mornings I take the dogs down to the river by the old mill, and there is a large abandoned factory there which they love to walk round. A few weeks ago the grass was fairly short and our path, which a few fellow dog walkers had made, was easy to follow. Now almost daily I can see the grass growing, a week or two ago it was about three feet high but now it is almost my height, the seed heads bowing in the breeze, and our path is now harder and harder to negotiate as it regrows so quickly and even brambles are now snaking their way across it. At some point it will die off but for now the grass is growing at an alarming rate; lots of showers and sunshine providing the perfect conditions. And at a much slower rate we too are growing older and we must remind ourselves not to let the grass grow under our own feet too quickly either.