Sunday, 24 May 2009


Radio Four's Today programme has been focussing this week on the subject of how well people know their immediate neighbours, and I've been astonished how many people have said they don't really know them very well at all. One of the best things, I think, about living in a small community several miles from your nearest Tesco or Asda, is the countless opportunities for getting to know the people next door. I'm not sure what I'd have done without Adam and Cheryl...

Things I've borrowed from Adam and Cheryl over the past year:

Four tomatoes
A two-ring electric hotplate
A Feng Shui book
A lawn-edging tool
A book about pickling and preserving
Some Borlotti beans
A tin of coconut milk
A small jar of cumin
A chainsaw
A small area of their allotment to house some potatoes
A pruning saw
Our spare keys (several times...)
A pair of tweezers to get the bit of my key that broke off out of the front door lock
Spare keys (again)
Car (plus driver) to get to Malmesbury when mine suddenly started to spout smoke
A pouch of cat food
Two cans of Stella (strictly speaking, these were for my husband, although I have to confess to taking the odd sip...)
Babysitting services
Car (plus driver) to get to sister's house in Wales and back
Cat-sitting services
Dog-walking services (when ill)
Child's shepherd outfit for school nativity play
A dongle (memory stick)
Sloe gin recipe
Small child's hat
Strong painkillers
Small bag of potatoes (no, that was Janice, and I have been meaning to return them...)

Things they've borrowed from us:


I imagine you're probably thanking your lucky stars you don't live next door to me. Funnily enough, the house immediately next door to us has been on the market rather a long time...

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