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Margot tries the good life - new family arriving to the village

PUBLISHED: 10:33 06 October 2014 | UPDATED: 10:33 06 October 2014

Archant

With a new family arriving to the village, Margot and Jerry rejoice at no longer being the ‘newbies’

What a glorious summer it’s been, dear Reader. Our Hampshire staycation has had us up to all sorts of mischief and adventure. With sailing on the Solent, sun-kissed walks on sandy beaches on the Isle of Wight, learning how to catch brown trout on the Test and picnicking in some of the most perfect spots in the New Forest with resident horses and donkeys - it’s been fantastically busy. Hasn’t our county got plenty to offer? Not to mention all the delicious local food and drink. We have tasted a whole host of sparkling wines, had lazy pub lunches, while dipping our toes in a cool stream, and even sampled the delights of local real ale. Here at Margot and Jerry HQ, we take our research very seriously. I can assure you that sampling Hampshire’s finest was selflessly all for your benefit.

Bitten by the brewing bug after a tour of one of the local breweries, Jerry decided that he could convert our little house into a microbrewery and his ‘brew’ spent the first part of its life bubbling away in a barrel in the spare room.

I kept imagining at any moment that the whole vin-ballon might reach its critical mass in an exploding beer bomb at 3am. But happily, no.

After a two-week fermentation and a good deal of testing (Jerry wanted to make sure it was just right, of course), the results are pretty impressive to be honest and Jerry has been offering up a pint or two to willing tasters in the village. Perhaps a new career is on the cards?

Thoughts are turning towards autumn now as our lambs are getting fatter by the day and their fate is close at hand. I can safely say that I have become something of a geek on all things woolly.

Never did I imagine that a year after we moved from the Big Smoke, I would be so well acquainted with livestock and think nothing of cleaning the back end of a sheep with warm soapy water and a scrubbing brush. Jerry is rather looking forward to some tasty lamb chops but it’s going to be difficult to convince Poppy and Primrose that lambs can’t remain as pets.

Still, our girls have been distracted temporarily, as has the whole village, by the arrival of new family.

I wondered how long it would be before the hamlet bush telegraph was in force, beating out the deepest secrets of our new neighbours. I can confirm that it is alive and kicking and I am sure they’ll be signed up to the flower arranging rota in no time. Jerry and I have already witnessed an orderly queue forming; villagers keen to deliver welcome offerings to their door, just as they did for us a year ago. We’re delighted not to be the ‘newbies’ anymore and it’s marvellous to have some fresh blood around. I wonder if we’ll be able to persuade them to go halves on a pony over a glass of wine or two?

Soon we’ll see our little Poppy starting nursery and Primrose will be back at school, a year older and wiser. Blissful long days in the garden will be gone for another year, but for now, dear Reader, I’m still clinging on tightly to the last vestiges of summer - and my chilled glass of rosé.

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Read on

Margot tries the good life - exciting news...

Columnist Margot Darling on embracing her latest creature comforts

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