Up on the roof

I’ve been feeling quite miserable this year.  In a way it started in April last year when I realised that, as much as I loved the choir I’d joined, I wasn’t really a part of it.  It had been a delight to find it and it had become the highlight of my week.  When the incumbent newsletter writer had decided he wanted his life back I had immediately volunteered.  I was a good newsletter writer too; some members told me that mine were the only ones they’d ever read because they were entertaining as well as informative.  By informative, I mean the notes from the rehearsals were included.  There never seemed to be any gig information to put in.  Then I found out that this information was available, but that it wasn’t given to me because I was not a member of the “inner circle”.  I discovered this when I overheard one of the inner circle tell a choir member who had asked why the concert information was never included; “Well, we tell the newsletter writers but they never put it in the newsletter”.  When I challenged this, I was shouted at.  So I walked – from the newsletter, not the choir.  I am still very fond of the people in it but this has rather spoiled my overall enjoyment of it.

For some reason it bothers me more now.  Perhaps I miss writing them, I certainly don’t enjoy reading them, but I don’t really know whether it’s that, the flatmate who fills the flat with friends for up to three weeks, sometimes giving them a key, without ever telling me, the language schools who treat freelancers like chattels, or that, once too often, I have found myself fact-checking articles I think I could have written better, but all-in-all it had not been the best start to the year.


On Tuesday morning I dragged myself VERY reluctantly out of bed for an 8am lesson (I had recently fallen Prey to “House of Cards” on Netflix and had over-indulged the night before).  As I was clattering down the stairs to fetch my bike, I passed the landing window (I do this quite often, twice a day at least.  Unavoidable really, unless I take up abseiling) and saw this:

20160329_114711 Now, to you, this may look like a grotty window sill and a rather uninspiring roof.  To me, it’s a potential GARDEN.  I had been looking at flats.  Even outside London this is a depressing experience when you’ve wanted a home and land more than you ever wanted a career.  Suddenly, I feel less inclination to move.  OK, my nice china will have to stay under the bed for a little longer but with all this space, I CAN GROW STUFF!

So, lesson dispatched, I cycled off to OBI (the German equivaent of Homebase / B&Q) and bought some seeds, a planter and rather a lot of compost (imagine all that in a saddle bag):

Ready & waiting 31 March 2016

(I already had the bin bag).  I have planted tomato and pea seeds and put them in the bag to keep them warm and moist.  I wonder if I should tie the back up but I want to make sure the carbon dioxide circulates.  Admittedly, being an avid Archers’ fan and partial to Gardeners’ Question Time hasn’t really helped on this point but I wasn’t going to pay extra for a lid to the planter.  I have successfully grown tomatoes from seed before.  I think there’s a reason I never attempted peas.  I think it had to do with space I hope friends with balconies will take some plants.  I hope something grows.  Still it’s exciting and it’s quieted the land lust for a while.  I can work on getting my income up to garden-renting snuff while these little darlings are growing.  Now, just one more photo:

Inside the polytunnel 31 March 2016Inside the polytunnel.  You see, Archers’ fans, I think Adam would be proud of me.  🙂






About afewwordsinpencil

An English writer of novels and theatrical pieces. My first novel, "And I Shall Be Healed" (Quickbeam Press) follows the experiences of a young army chaplain on the Western Front 1916-7. I am now back in England after a few years spent in Bonn, Germany and working on my next novel, "Lost & Won". This is the sequel to Healed and will bring an end to that story.
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