This isn't the blog I intended to write today. No, I planned to post a story about the four days I just spent walking in the Scottish Borders. Either that, or our week away at the Ride2stride Walking Festival, or maybe my new project to walk A Dales High Way on alternate Saturdays with a group from Nidderdale or....
Well you get the idea. I've got plenty going on, most of it involving walking and all of it taking me away from home. And that's where the problem lies.
Last night I had a visit from the secretary of our allotment association, a dear friend of mine, who wondered on behalf of t'committee, whether I was actually going to plant anything on my plot this year. She offered me 3 alternatives - give it up, share with someone from the waiting list or commit to cultivating. I tried to convince her that there was a 4th option - leave me and my weeds to our own devices but no - I have to make my mind up.
|My plot looks like this ...|
|...when it should look like this|
|The canal flows along the bottom of the site|
It's not just that I'll miss the gardening, I have a garden at home, I can neglect that instead. It's not the company - I enjoy a chinwag with my allotment neighbours but I see most of them around the village anyway. It's not even losing the peace and quiet although one of the things I love most is that feeling of being away from phones and emails and domestic responsibilities for an hour or two.
No, I think I'm saddest about giving up the notion of myself as someone who has an allotment. It's who I think I am - walker, gardener, writer, cook - and giving up the allotment feels like I've lost a part of myself.
|Last year's apple and redcurrant jelly|