I don’t wish to tempt fate but I have “potentially" found a way of keeping the dreaded mares tail under control, for now! I have been banging on about the mares tail for ages now and was given loads of advice about what to do.
Amongst the suggestions were a) salt water - but be careful of the surrounding plants and be prepared for the soil to lose its nutrients, b) vinegar - mixed with water and sprayed generously, c) boiling hot water - wear gloves, the watering can gets very very hot, d) dishwasher powder - I’ve only got tablets, e) flame it - but be careful of surrounding hedges and fences, f) very strong weedkiller - I’ve tried that hence my need for something, g) move - rather a drastic solution and one I was not going to do. I was getting impatient and decided to pool the advice, so added a) to d) in a watering can with boiling water and sprayed the mares tail and any other weed that reared its ugly head. As I type the mares tail has not returned since my initial application 4 weeks ago, but I won’t rest on my laurels and am hoeing to ensure any small growth is firmly given its marching orders. We’ll see!
Aren’t you lucky having girls, they said! No standing on the edge of a pitch watching football on a drizzly or frosty morning, they said. Well yes, but actually no! All of my girls have at some stage played football. Until a skiing injury last year my middle daughter played football and my youngest still plays. No lie ins for us, oh no when the alarm goes off it’s off to the pitch ensuring we’ve got boots, shin pads, water bottles, coat, towel, change of clothes, dry clothes bag and wet clothes bag. I won’t profess to know the off side rule, or understand why sometimes the girls will throw the ball in or kick it but I go along and support the girls. The girls are team players, learning new and improving skills and disciplines, they’re supportive to their team players, accepting of constructive feedback and and they’re not glued to their screens. Yes winning is good, but taking part is important. I played lacrosse at school, I loved it. I wasn’t a brilliant player but I could play and enjoyed it, and those more able and capable were, very much like our girls now, keen and eager.
Of course the bonus of a home game is not just the closeness to home (and the not so early start) but also the bacon butty and cup of tea that we can pick up from the club house. The club house is open to all, is available to hire and we’re very lucky that we can hold our team socials there. People are often looking for venues, it’s so hard to find one that is the right size, some are too large, some are too small, some don’t have a bar or catering options, some don’t have an outside area. Emmbrook Sports and Social Club on Lowther Road ticks a lot of boxes and is used for a number of local events, Kiki Dee has even performed there.
On Tuesday I went to London for an evening with Mick Fleetwood. Wow. Having grown up on a diet of Fleetwood Mac (Mott the Hoople, ELO, Alan Parsons Project, Tom Petty etc) I was in my element and it was an absolute treat to be in the audience whilst this enigmatic man spoke with great fondness about the history of Fleetwood Mac and all the band members. He spoke a great deal about the band members that are no longer with us and when he spoke about John McVie, he took a breath and said “truly, he is my dearest friend”.
And friendship to me, is one of the most magical gifts ever.