It is night-time, 00:38 a.m., to be precise, and I am not long in. OH, YD and I decided to go down to the village pub earlier. Something we had been promising ourselves for quite some time. We usually drop down to the next village, OH and I, catch up with all our friends [well, mostly mine, I grew up here] and last night, after Downton Abbey we decided to call into the local.
Pubs in Ireland have taken a hammering with all the pc rules that came on board in the past decade or so. No smoking; so now everybody sits out in the cold in winter in draughty shelters...well, where else are you going to have a bit of craic with your pals. In our village it's not an option, go out and be blown out of it with a howling gale...the village has become very healthy regarding smoking in the past twenty years.
It was lovely to meet up with the neighbours, catch up on whose who [my God, hasn't she aged...look in the mirror dear at yourself!] and could your one over there really be a grandmother? For heaven's sake she was three years behind me in school. How could she be a granny...and of course the questions flying back at us. YD got the usual inquisition "Have you a boyfriend love?!" or "if you're not dating pet, I have a lovely son, he's 36, on his second marriage and has 14 kids". Yes. Indeed.
As OH works anti social hours, most of the neighbours were amazed either with the fact that we were still together after 32 years, or that we still went out together, or that we actually have a mid-twenties daughter. He worked in the place 40 years ago and I was tickled pink when two of my former disco-dancing days pals informed me that he hadn't aged a bit since those days. One cast a cold eye over me and asked me had I heard of botox, the other patted my hand and said I was still quite presentable. Thanks Gals! You don't look a day over 80 either. [Loud giggle!].
As we staggered up the hill after mid-night, not inebriated but tilting head first into a howling gale force wind, a fox was sitting in the front garden having a staring competition with Mme Pounce. Pounce has not been feeling too well this week. More to do with convincing OH and YD that I have starved her and she has been indulging in extra packets of a well known cat food product - serve the hussy right for miaowing lies. My moneys with the fox. Anyhow, as soon as Mme Pounce saw us coming she hopped off the garden table and chased the poor, innocent, underfed, terrified little fox away. Am I biased? Yep, you got it. There were foxes in this garden before herself arrived.
She has put up a ton of weight since moving here. Life suits her, no big black and white bullying tom from the old house around to chase her round the garden. She has discovered the cosiest of hidey holes to rest up in during the day and with her cheating eating is as fat as a frump.
Our owl has reappeared, he is to be seen these nights floating past the dining room window. He was missing for a while, but is now back with us. A barn owl, he sails on silent wings across the garden. In the daytime we are treated to the cackling of a Jay. In my childhood there were a lot of jays around but now after an absence of many years one has come back to us.
Away with me to my bed before I fall asleep. I shall resist the urge to watch another programme on our forthcoming presidential election. I am tired enough to sleep without its benefit.
As Dixon of Dock Green used to say "Good night folks!!!".