Anakana Schofield – Author of Martin John and Malarky

A beautiful day in the city, too beautiful to be stuck indoors editing, but there you have it. Aside from a quick foray to the strawberry patch, this head is down working away.

I am watching the evacuation situation in the Peace River region with interest and a degree of alarm — where’s all this rain coming from?

It fascinates me how the meteorology of this vast province can vary so incredibly. This isn’t the case in Ireland where if it’s raining in Mayo, it’s usually raining in Dublin, Sligo and uberalles.

Yesterday en route to a lovely treat of a dinner (Thanks L, P, U x) I was thinking as we walked past the gardens, how each tells its own story in a way that the houses (in these particular spots do not). In the gardens we also see so much progress and contrast. One held a wire-installation/contraption and had a sign saying it was a micro rope garden. Intriguement! A few houses over, a terrifically ugly gravel and brick combo double yet divided staircase was being built in a very jumbled arrangement. The most dominant change afoot is the number of houses that are switching lawn to vegetable boxes! Yes! Lawn is such a pointless carpet and water drain.

There was one detail on one of the houses that made me smile. An upstairs front door facing South right above the downstairs front door. I tried to tell if at one time it had a staircase or entrance up to it, but there was no sign of it. Maybe just an eccentric detail. Or a householder who had skybound ambition.

I realized as we walked how much I miss the row upon row of red brick houses and chimney pots that line my memory. But I never tire of the gardens and their varieties here. You can sometimes even see particular cultural traits within them. (The employment of spent brooms and mop handles nests with an affection for bulbs). One of the great losses in our neighbourhood was when three brothers sold their house and it’s eccentric garden, which had bathtubs, frying pans embedded in it and all kinds of “hatchy” looking touches. Now it’s razed and risen into another ostentatious looking lottery house with an overindulgence in gravel instead in the garden.

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