The woods “pitiably thinned”; nine years of this “labour of love”; Gran disappears into a trench; Hugh Boyd – goose guru; “pink makes the boys wink”; a proud moment; a traditional Christmas and Julian smokes during the National Anthem!
On November 21st 1955, Gran is surprisingly sanguine about the unwelcome developments on her doorstep:
This afternoon I finished the Poppy calendar and decided this is the one for Mary. Somehow it looks like hers. The sun was still shining, burnishing the tips of the trees opposite here, whereon a few last golden leaves are clinging, and giving a beautiful sheen to the velvet-dark Yew trees, which, thank God, are still standing. But the opposite wood is pitiably thinned and a little township is springing up where once I gathered blackberries and vetch, and listened to the warblers, watched the Siskins and saw the first Brimstones in Spring. Soon I shall have to roam far afield for the glories that have been on my doorstep for over twenty-seven years. But I am very grateful for the years in which I have known them.