Tuesday, July 06, 2004

subs
When I was in Brownies, at the beginning of each Thursday-night meeting, Brown Owl would call us into a ring and ask for subs (20p) to be paid. To make this fun she'd ask us to balance our twenty-pence pieces on our foreheads or on our shoes, or to roll them into the centre of the ring. After subs had been delivered, any news items concerning the whole pack (Brownies come in packs, from memory, Guides come in troops - Olave Baden-Powell knew about girls: screaming, rabid seven-year olds and thundering twelve year-olds, respectively). This post is going to be a bit like those Brownie ring meetings - although I may return to the reminiscing as, now I've got started, my head is swimming with great stories about my Guiding days (I genuinely loved Guides).
So... First up a reminder of an upcoming event, James Blogwell's proprietor, Ralph Parfect, PhD, is delivering a paper on blogging for the IES at Senate House on Saturday, 17 July. Details on this event, Literary London, can be found here. I'm contemplating burrowing in at some point if I can.
Second item on this post's agenda is to tell you all about the progress of Badger Mansions' garden. [At this point Brown Owl does her best Percy Thrower impression.] Now then girls, the story so far: we were lucky enough to overhear one of our neighbours complaining about some dilapidated old window boxes that had been abandoned since one of the residents moved out. I offered to take these old plastic containers and dispose of the nasty geraniums (ugh, don't they smell ghastly). In one window box/container I repotted my Aloe Vera plant (TA and I never tire of saying 'allo, Vera!' as we pass her) and lots of cuttings from my money plant. These tiny money plant offspring are officially TA's career feng shui while the original plant, currently sitting in the kitchen on the windowsill, remains mine. In the second window box/container I have planted some cuttings from our neighbour's potted herbs. Neighbour is away for many weeks at a time and we help water her plants for her, we are on very friendly terms and she has told us repeatedly to help ourselves. There is one container left. I have bought some plant food in case the soil is knackered (I rather suspect it is). I'd like to grow things I can eat - either more herb or perhaps some garlic/spring onions/carrots. Any suggestions? Bear in mind that anything I grow will need to be robust enough to survive the winter outside - Vera did though so I think the spot the plants are in is quite sheltered and it gets a fair amount of sunshine too.
I hate the term 'window box'. Up until quite recently, the bungalow opposite my parents' place was occupied by a rather 'Keeping Up Appearances' type couple. Soon after they moved in my dad went over to introduce himself. In passing my dad praised their handsome window boxes. 'Oh yes,' said the lady of the house, 'my husband makes them. That's why our old house was called "Window Boxes". I think that we'll get a new plaque for this place.' Sure enough within a month there was a wooden plaque with roses painted on it proudly naming the house 'Window Boxes'. Surely 'Dunroamin' would have been better?
My guiding anecdotes will have to wait until campfire, as I'm beginning to develop sore fingers from typing. Repeat ging gang googly googly googly wotcha ging gang goo ging gang goo to fade.

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