A Change of Direction

The weeks passed at Lakehayes, days of weeding followed days of potting, watering and relocating plants from the polytunnel to outdoors. It is still a slow time of year for the nursery, with things stalled based on competing personal and family obligations and necessary changes to the business website.

Conditions in our mobile home continued to improve with further progress made in making the place hospitable, the outstanding issue now, dealing with the nightly temperature drop. Against this we armed ourselves with layers of jumpers and jackets and replenished our hot water bottles (now affectionately termed HWB’s) every couple of hours until we went to bed and waited for the heating to make a difference during the earliest morning hours. We also made good friends with the resident canines (as we often have): Smudge, almost 8 years old and two of her litter of nine, Barney and Tinker, almost 3 years old now.

We were surprised and alarmed to realize there was another occupant of our little mobile home when we saw him/her running across the kitchen floor one night, a mouse who had apparently made it’s nest in the spare bedroom, full of things in storage. Sarah discovered the nest location by accident when she went to retrieve a box from there and the nest landed on the hallway carpet. We had previously told her of the mouse, but she wasn’t compelled to action until she realized the nesting was happening in her things in storage and she had accidentally destroyed the poor thing’s little home.

Humane mouse traps laid the following day, we then supplied the mouse with peanut butter on a regular basis, as the traps simply wouldn’t trap it. The little one even searched our things for reward, chewing a hole through R’s deodorant bottle, leaving a puddle of the liquid in it’s wake and attempting to do the same to our little glass essential oil bottles – foiled by molten sand…haha! So, every night before we could lay our heads down to sleep, we started moving all of our things to the bedroom, suitcases or a cupboard.

A few of the evenings, we even had the idea we could trap it ourselves by constructing a “Tom and Jerry“-like trap from different containers and spent the evening with one eye on our homemade “trap” with cheese or a piece of chocolate inside. One of those nights, we awoke from having dozed off on the couch to see Mousey heading back under the kitchen door to the hallway and shortly after realized he had just finished enjoying the cheese we’d placed in the “trap”. On the other couple of evenings, he didn’t even come close to the trap until after we’d went to bed and he could take his proper time feasting on our intentions of freedom.

In between the excitement of the nursery and mobile home/mouse experiences, there was always our daily walk, occasionally all the way into Chard and back in order to acquire some needed food supply and also a few bus trips to Lyme Regis or beyond. We definitely found peace by the sea and the salty air helped to clear out the allergies for at least the few hours we were away.

One day trip took us on a third bus out of Lyme Regis to Seaton, with the intent of walking the 7 miles back to Lyme Regis along the Coastal Path. Unfortunately, just over a mile into the journey, we were met with a posted notice about subsidence and were forced to make our way back into Seaton where we attempted the path the other direction for a decent walk West and back, but were met with the same issue and ended up busing back to Lyme without a lovely walk at all. Even in Lyme Regis the “coastal defences” were under repair and currently block off a beach walk from there to Charmouth. Amazing what the effects of the weather have been to the coastline of this island nation.

In mid-March the sun finally started to appear and it most certainly brought joy with it. We realized how long the winter had been and how we longed to be outside and enjoying nature once again. We started to reflect on whether WWOOFing was delivering the results we started out searching for and whether we wanted to continue down the path of living under the decisions of host after host for month after month in order to complete the longer end of the range we had planned. March marked only month seven of this adventure and we had once thought we might want to complete a full twelve.

At the end of this reflection, we decided it was time for a break and the opportunity to stay in one spot for many weeks. We started next to plan our extended honeymoon and officially celebrate the beginning of our life together.

Loving Simplicity