Tuesday, August 9, 2016
The Very Old Farmer has made such a rumpus about being removed from his home that the matron of the Maison d-Acceuil now drives him over to the village every morning. He's unloaded from the minibus and positioned, in his wheelchair, at the front door of his little farmhouse. From here he can see all the village comings and goings. The district nurse visits at noon and the 'meals on wheels' lady at one. As he's an old soldier the Ministry of Defence pays a lady to come and keep an eye on him. He finds this lady's supervision to be both irritating and unwanted. She's dispatched with the words '' If I needed the Gestapo to keep an eye on me I'd ask them myself ". He's collected by the matron at three. A pair of aluminium ramps enable him to maneuver himself into and out of the garden.
He waves to us as we pass. We spend an hour chatting about the price of wheat, the food in Sweden and variety of other unexpected things. He's particularly taken with a new pair of Velcro fastened slippers that he's been given. '' Would you like to try them ? They might suit you when I'm gone ". Angus politely declines the generous offer. Sophie is spoken to with the quiet intimacy of a man who is used to having dogs by his side. She sits transfixed knowing these sweet nothings are about her. Every so often she wanders off and explores his kitchen. The Very Old Farmer has been in the house since 1924 and if he had his way he'd be there still. He describes his health problems with a candour that is thankfully beyond both Sophie's and her masters linguistic understanding. We promise to come and see him tomorrow.
Sophie seems none the worse for her foray into The Very Old Farmers kitchen. Bob exudes contentment.
Absolutely no doubting it's high summer. The Moroccan ladies with their woven baskets are back at the morning market.
This article is rather lyrically written :