Chris's Weblog – City Chickens

Tag Archive: book

My Family And Other Animals

“Like a gentle, enthusiastic and understanding Noah, she has steered her vessel full of strange progeny through the stormy seas of life with great skill, always faced with the possibility of mutiny, always surrounded by the dangerous shoals of overdraft and extravagance, never being sure that her navigation would be approved by the crew, but certain that she would be blamed for anything that went wrong. That she survived the voyage is a miracle, but survive it she did, and, moreover, with her reason more or less intact. As my brother rightly points out, we can be proud of the way we have brought her up; she is a credit to us.”

A quote from My Family And Other Animals by Gerald Durrell.

Kind words written by a son about his mother. I would like to think that my children could think of me in this way. It does seem to illustrate the rewarding journey that I have travelled to date with my wonderfully unique children. Never a dull moment during the ups and downs, adventures, heartaches and proud moments that have been my life up to now. Also, just like the Durrells, we have had a menagerie of various animals along the way. I was introduced to these stories when I was studying English Literature for GCE but feel I have appreciated them more since growing up and having my own family.

I hope that I have been able to be what I always dreamed of being when I was a girl. A good mother. Even when I was quite young I wanted children. I used to gather the children from our small post war street of prefabs and ‘mother’ them. I led small rag tag groups, which included my own little sister, five years younger than me, on various adventures amazingly surviving canals, disused coal mines, railway lines and bridges and water filled marlholes all of which were the norm around where we lived. We were happy with a milk bottle of water and jam sandwiches prepared by me which we would have half way through our adventure usually sat in a grass lined dip over the bank when I would teach them about wild flowers and other such gems. When I was twelve I was presented with a little brother and was able to practice with a real baby. I can remember running home from senior school to be with him.  I was twenty three, however, before I had the first of my own three lovely boys and that was the start of my life as a Mother. My raison d’etre.

 

Allotment Growing by John Harrison

vegetable-growing-150.jpgLast night I ordered a copy of Allotment Growing. I already have a link to John Harrison’s website on the sidebar of my weblog under friends. Here is a link to the page specifically about his book.  http://www.allotment.org.uk/book/index.php With his permission I may occasionally refer to a hint or a tip gathered from his work. Whilst on the subject of gardening gurus I will mention again the links to two sowing and planting planners written by a forum member TeeGee. The links will also lead you to his website which is well worth a look. Update – well, at 11am the book was sitting on the door mat. First look was good. I like the style of writing, very conversational and friendly. I look forward to reading more. My parcel also included two packets of seed; Cabbage Kilaxy and Cauliflower Galleon.