3rd: Back and forth between home and allotment
My confidence has improved and I feel the wind is in my sails. Today I went down the allotment at 6 am, hardly any traffic on the road. Rather than the 45 minutes prep time I needed on previous trips, I am getting used to donning the high viz vest, helmet and my shoulder back, and heading off at the drop of a hat to sprinkle the thirsty vegetables.
This is a critical time of the year. The soil in the allotment dries within hours, so you need to water it every day, or at least every second day. With Jenny and the kids in Dorset, I no longer have the car, so biking is the only way I can get down to nurture the produce. It feels fantastic. I have always felt that doing our allotment was something valuable and in tune with nature, but the reality of going down each day in a diesel-fuelled car has spoilt the illusion somewhat.
But going on a bike is perfect. Especially at 6 am, there is very little traffic on the road, and the air is still fresh and clean. I experience a real sense of joy as I cycle down the hill to the allotment, past the stables, and then sneak my bike around the padlocked barrier and along the path that leads to our plot. I lean it onto its stand, put my helmet and high viz vest on the rear rack, hook up the hose and open the nozzle. There is no one else around. I have a tremendous surge of emotion that I don’t yet understand, a feeling of liberation from a stultifying constraint.