Wolds Diary: Spring is bursting out but car damage proved exhausting

Cawood near Selby. Picture: Mike Cowling
Cawood near Selby. Picture: Mike Cowling
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On the hedgerows and in the gardens spring is bursting out, the hedges are sprouting bright green leaves, there are buds on many trees and shrubs and in the gardens the primroses are out, as are many other spring flowers.

Daffodils are in bloom everywhere and it as times like this that I am reminded just how beautiful our country is.

Among the walks with the dogs this week I have been a couple of times to the far reaches of Pocklington canal, where I seldom if ever meet anyone else. On one occasion, I did meet a man hopefully fishing but he had not caught anything.

Once between the canal and the nearby dyke I could let the dogs off the lead for a good run. Everything was very waterlogged and all around us were flooded fields. The water in the dyke and the canal was muddy and flowing fast, as it had rained heavily the night before.

Of course, Boo my black Labrador, was in and out of the water, much to her delight. She emerged with green specks of pond weed all over her and it was only after another two or three trips into the water she finally lost the vegetation and looked comparatively clean. I noticed that on the banks and what grassland I could see there were thousands of bright yellow celandines in bloom, which made the whole trip very pleasant.

On Tuesday, I went over to see the Poppleton Old Folks Club, at the Methodist Church rooms there. I have been several times before and they are a small but charming group who welcome me and even laugh at some of my stories.

I have been out on other walks as well, and have realised I need to get new wellies as I do not think I should have one wet foot within minutes of setting out. I have washed the floors at home several times this week to clean the doggy and human muddy footprints off.

My house guest had the misfortune of a flat tyre, and needed to get it repaired so I took the wheel up to my local garage on the Wednesday. The huge long piece of metal they extracted had damaged the tyre beyond repair and they had to fit a new one.

On Thursday I went over in the evening to Cawood, to speak to the WI there, at their evening meeting. I like Cawood and arrived early and headed off to a hostelry to have a fruit juice and then got to the Old Boys School in time to see the Brownies leave, greeted at the door by their parents, and then the WI arrived and I met several ladies I had met before.

This old building has great charm, and has been well modernised. We sang Jerusalem, and I was fascinated to listen to what is happening on the WI front before speaking. I chatted to many of the ladies before setting off to come home.

On the journey home I passed under a bridge on the road where there was a dip. As the car dropped down into it, my exhaust broke and I finished the journey with a loud exhaust. First thing the next morning I was back at my garage to get it fixed.

They duly ordered the parts and promised they would fit it in the late afternoon, so I returned then. The garage owner, a wonderful and helpful chap, stayed late to fix it for me, but we encountered a rather crucial problem. The parts company had sent the wrong part for the middle section.

He was quite distressed as he had no courtesy car to offer me, and I could either drive it with a faulty exhaust for the weekend, or leave it on the ramp to be fixed on the Monday, which is what I elected to do. He very kindly gave me a lift home after we had locked the garage up.

This meant that I walked the dogs locally for a couple of short walks, and even walked to church on Sunday. I was learning from our superb church warden how to help and be a relief warden when required, and it is amazing just how much there is to do.

This includes things like counting the collection, setting alarms, switching off lights and locking up. I met a kind and charming couple who were visiting Pocklington, from quite near Doncaster, who had brought me ties! One of the servers lives near me and kindly gave me a lift home.