It's all been kicking off here today! We have almost, but not quite, been evacuees. I am glad about the 'almost' bit because quite frankly I didn't fancy the prospect of having to squash three cats and two hens in a single cat carrier and there is no way I'd allow myself to be evacuated without taken the gang with me.
So what has happened, I hear you say. Well, about half past three this afternoon I went into the garden to check on the progress of hen relations - I think Primrose is getting the idea that Camilla is here to stay and Camilla is being very good at schmoozing Primrose and my wellies - and as I opened the back door there was an ENORMOUS and over-powering whiff of gas.
'Cor blimey!' I said. 'If that's the effect of giving you ladies oats for breakfast then it's straight back to the layers' pellets.'
'She thinks she's such a comedian,' said Primrose. 'You'll get used to her.'
'Whatever you say, your Lady Ma'amship,' said Camilla. (By the way, several people have been under the impression Camilla is named after Camilla Parker Bowles. She is not. She is named after Camilla Fritton, Head Mistress of St. Trinian's School for Girls. Credit me with some class, please.)
Back to the gas. It was very, very... well, gassy. And just as I thought I ought to call the emergency gas line and report it, a small gas van went whizzing up the road, followed by a large gas van, followed by a police van, and I thought, 'Well, it all looks under control, whatever it is. Hurrah!'
And I got out the ironing board and did a spot of ironing to 'Deal or No Deal.' (I have done something useful today, before you tut at my TV watching indulgence - I sewed together an enormous and, it turns out, heavy, chunky cardigan. I had to purchase a wool needle with an enormous eye because the wool was so thick. Honestly, you could fit a python through the eye of this needle. Not that I would want to, of course. My example is merely for illustrative purposes so you can go, 'Wow! That must be really thick wool.' I am wearing the cardigan now. It is like being pinned to the sofa by an enormous pink sheep.)
And as I ironed I noticed a distinct lack of traffic going up, and indeed down, the road. It was blissfully quiet. And five hours later it is still closed to traffic. It is marvellous! I am thinking of starting a petition to get the road closed permanently.
Andy went out to investigate. He returned, having gathered the appropriate gossip - er, news. Apparently, there was a massive gas leak on the road between us and the park. Eye witnesses said it was so big, this gas leak, that it could actually be seen, shimmering through the air! About twenty families in the very close vicinity were evacuated to the nearby leisure centre and the rest of us in the not quite so near vicinity were left to cough it out with the gassy honk.
Heather phoned. She was being prevented from returning home by an over-zealous police man at the road block. However, she eventually arrived home, having convinced the police man that we were still at home and that the home was not in the immediate evacuation zone. I am cross with the police officer for allowing my daughter to travel into a potential explosion hazard. A flagrant dereliction of duty, I think.
My son phoned to check his Mum was all
right - everybody go 'Aahhh!' - that's my boy! And my friend, Jean, who lives nearby, phoned to check we were okay and to offer her home as an evacuation refuge if we had to leave our home. She's such a kind and selfless friend. Makes good cake, too!
And that's about it. Our little moment of excitement. The road blocks are still in place so I guess the emergency services are still working on repairing the gas pipe which collapsed. Andy and I are feeling a little muzzy headed but nothing to worry about. I can't believe how quiet it is with no traffic passing by. And I am pleased with my chunky knit cardie!