Passing the test

Mirinda headed off for Bath this afternoon. She’s staying at the uni holiday accommodation for tonight in order to be fresh and ready for her viva which is tomorrow morning. It’s a far better idea than setting off for a three hour drive early in the morning before sitting down for a couple of hours discussing her thesis.

She left after lunch, having seen off Gardener Dave and Louis who Gardener Dave calls Luigi for reasons known only to himself because I don’t think he’s Italian.

I’d been to the gym for my first session this morning then the shops so they wowed me with what they’d accomplished.

About the gym…the equipment is excellent, the fact that there are few people there at 8am is superb and the walk is best of all. The one thing I wasn’t that keen on was the upstairs shower. While it’s a walk in shower, there’s no shelf for soap (or anything else) and there appears to be no extractor fan. The room is quite small so it gets like a steam room. The only upside to that is that it’s actually cooler outside when you’ve finished.

Still, I can live with the shower (I’m going to try the one downstairs tomorrow) because everything else is perfect. I especially love the fact that I can leave the gym and be in Starbucks five minutes later. No bus. No cars to avoid. It’s marvellous.

Anyway, back at home, the gardeners had managed to work their magic throughout the garden, clearing the Secret Arch and Emma’s Bush, which seems to have been struck by a meteorite.

Emma’s bush is on the left with a dark area where the meteorite struck

It’s called Emma’s Bush because she likes playing underneath it while Freya deliberately avoids it. I have seen Emma dart underneath and Freya, who had been chasing her, suddenly slam on the brakes. I can only assume it’s a place where Emma goes for solitude when she needs it.

I do think I’m going to have to move the stepping slabs though. The walk through Carmen’s Sweet Escape was always a bit of a squeeze but now we have a four lane highway, I need to centre the path a bit.

However, my favourite bit of the work today has to be what they accomplished with the Secret Arch. Before they started this morning, this arch was close to invisible behind the dogwood. Now it’s perfectly framed.

We’ll still call it the Secret Arch though

They really earned their money today, just like the Australian men’s cricket team did up at Edgbaston.

They had a mighty unassailable lead going into the fifth and final day. All they had to do was bowl out the English and that is exactly what they did. Possibly the best bit was that the commentator at the fall of the last wicket was Australian Jim Maxwell. He was pretty delighted, I have to say.

And so, Australia won the first Ashes test decisively by 251 runs. Long may it continue. It seems like a lovely set up for the Lord’s test match next week. Lucky Jud.

The Hot Border looking…well, hot.
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