It’s along way from Christmas but if Santa is compiling lists of those who are naughty and those who are nice, he’ll be busy. People have polarised, quite noticeably.
This was going to be a wonderfully upbeat, informative thingy about how you can make something to help the people round you.
A friend told me of a book share scheme in another town The libraries have closed, the big river retailer has stopped selling books and the bookshops are shut. I thought the hour had come for a community library. Accordingly I took my fifty year old seed table from storage behind the shed. In the autumn, before it was put away, the OH helped me drill some holes in the aluminium uprights to brace it and make it strong, ready to receive my seed trays in the spring. It has reversible trays that you can make into a depression to hold clay beads that retain moisture.
Now I thought it would be a wonderful thing, of exactly the right height, to make a community library at the end of the drive. I spent the morning digging down into the temporary shale, assisted by the OH, where the shale had impacted. I drove stakes into the shale and fastened the legs to them with table ties so they wouldn’t wave in the wind.
I made the sign, carefully researched with the aid of the OH who was a medical microbiologist. The protocol was: take a book, leave a book. To leave a book you choose a book you have not touched, coughed at or sneezed on for a week, with gloved hands, and put it in a sandwich bag. To take a book, get it home, disinfect the sandwich bag, wash your hands and leave the bag for 72 hours, after which you have a new book to read.
I spent the morning writing the sign and finding a big enough plastic bag to put it in. Then I raided my book stores. The result was this.
After we had stood on the drive and applauded the NHS, it took the books in to the garage on their seed trays.
Overnight someone stole the table.
Fifty years of love and care for the seeds that grew on that table, all gone. A wonderful idea to help people, spoiled.
When we had the wall built in the back garden the OH instructed the bricklayer to leave a hedgehog hole. Yesterday someone had put a brick on the other side. When the OH poked it out, they replaced it with metal stakes.
So, which side of Santa’s list do you belong to? Are you on the side of good? Are you helping altruistically, or
are you up for being sneezed on?