Wednesday 13th April
In preparation for moving we have to get our own house and garden ready for renting out. We have meaning to get our trees sorted for over seven years. It’s funny with what you live with yourself, but when you think about someone else living in your home – you realise what needs to be sorted! So we arranged for a tree surgeon to come to sort out the trees. We decided to use a charity working with people with addiction. They seek to bring long-term freedom and restoration to people who have been broken by drug and alcohol abuse. They do this by building values, skills and character through living, working together in a caring Christian community. Rather handily, they have a garden service!
On the day, a team of four arrived. There was a qualified tree surgeon who was in charge, and he was overseeing the team, giving them experience and helping them to gain the qualifications they need. They were a lovely bunch of guys who got on with the job. It was funny overhearing their conversations – particularly when they were debating amongst themselves as to what animals lived in our hutch outside – guinea pigs, rabbits or hamsters (they are guinea pigs).
It was amazing to see our garden transformed in a matter of hours. As we stood in the garden it felt bigger and a whole lots lighter. We could see the other house in the neighbourhood. After they left, Charlie went to do a bit of clearing up so we could return our trampoline to the back of the garden. Whilst out there he got talking to a neighbour over the back fence. It is the first time he had met her. Before today, we couldn’t even get to the back of the garden because it was so overgrown!!
Meanwhile at the front of the house, our next door but one neighbour was out brushing the pavement and road. It seems that the gardeners had left some of the debris from our trees at the front. She was not too happy about this. I knew it was a problem when she started to rant. She is normally the most joyful of people and always has a smile on her face. However, she pushed that garden brush around for a good hour, we could hear her sighing from our living room. I decide to take the bull by the horns and do what we call a “Billy Big Guns Apology”.
Whilst the debris left did not bother us, one rainfall would wash it away; it did matter to her. So I apologised profusely. She was still cross, but did not hold us responsible! Sometimes you just have to swallow your pride and make an apology for the sake of good community living and having good relationships with neighbours! This is something we want our children to see us doing – especially Alice – as it models the fact that sometimes you just have to swallow your pride and put things right.
A Family Less Ordinary Blog