Thursday, 5 July 2018

Basil and Trevor


The sun has now bleached the deep green of some of the pasture land around Trelawnyd. South facing lawns , the Churchyard and village green all now resemble amber weetabix and apart from the cottage roses many of the summer flowers have burnt away to nothing.
Cheerful Ann from the old Flower Show committee has been organising a last meal celebration for us all at The Crown for a week on Saturday.
There are twelve of us going with only Trendy Carol unable to attend, which is unfortunate.
Incidentally the fine weather has brought out a whole new wardrobe in Trendy Carol's vast collection.
Yesterday she floated past in something very loose fitting and ethereal .
She looked rather cool in this hot spell.
Anyhow , as usual , I am digressing.
The story today is a typically meandering and gentle one.
Last night Mary and I had walked to the outskirts of the village in order to drop of a menu to matriarch Irene for the aforementioned bunfight.
Her cottage is one of the oldest in the village and is called chwarel a Welsh word which means "quarry"
As I sweated and Mary panted, a familiar figure came into view . It was old Trevor out on his evening constitutional.
Trevor marches on at least two power walks daily. He was born in Trelawnyd in the 1920s and never left, and since he received a new knee he has been powerhousing around like a lobsided puppy.

Trevor, miles from home

We chatted for a while before he marched away down the lane and as he did so Basil , a local farmer drove up behind and stopped to chat too.
This stop / start thing is common in the country.
A half hour walk can often last well over an hour.
Basil marvelled at Trevor's jaunty gait and we joked that he walks faster and longer than I do, a man 35 years his junior .
Basil picked up a 25 kilo bag of sheep feed like he would have done a small handbag and slung it in the back of his truck, it was 8 pm and he was still working hard on farm matters...he remarked on the heat saying the his wheat was ready to cut, weeks before it should be.
We watched as Trevor marched off in the distance  and Basil asked " How old is Trevor now?" as he prepared for another job to do.
" I think he's 94!" I told him
"Yessssi !" Basil exclaimed " He's bloody grand for 94!" 
And Basil flipped up the heavy tailgate of his truck and jumped into the cab with a skip

I picked up Mary so Basil could pass by in the overgrown lane and I smiled to myself as the farm van roared off.
It was evening and Basil was still plugging away
He is in his mid eighties.

59 comments:

  1. trevor & basil kick ass! I hope I can be as mobile and spry when I reach their age!

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  2. Great punchline, John.

    As to "This stop / start thing is common in the country." Not just the country, John. I have been living in the center of a city for the last nine years. "You have made the vicinity into a village", the Angel once remarked. Indeed. It doesn't only make me happy that he is so observant and noticed my ways; it's true. So, to stick with your story, when I say, nipping out, that I'll be about half an hour he says: "Yes, Mama, see you in two."

    U

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    1. I'm the same Ursula-it's nice to just take time to engage with others as people are so interesting x

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  3. A lot of the older generation know the meaning of hard work and are great role models for the younger generation. It is a pity they are not more revered in British society. Trevor and Basil are great old names!

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    1. Basil lives with his elder sister mona...now she can make a scotch egg!

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  4. It must be down to the fresh country air. X

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  5. Reminds me of some allotmenteers I've encountered. In particular Maria, an elderly Italian widow at our previous site. Well into her eighties, she swore like a trooper, once fought off a mugger with a hoe she'd improvised out of a broom handle and a couple of nails. She once told us about rescuing a couple of "old ladies" who had got locked in after dark and forgotten their keys, and for some reason she'd had to climb over the 8ft gate to get to them.

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    1. The spirit that won the war

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  6. Ever marching on....healthy and good thinking time.

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  7. When my 'late' neighbour had her hip done, I told her to walk for at least 30 mins per day; even if it hurt. On day 1 she walked for about ten mins, then stopped completely. She was very soon immobile. She should have met Trevor.

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    1. He's just had his teeth done too, and now smiles like donny osmond

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    2. Ooh I remember the old Osmonds joke "Our teeth are like the stars - they come out at night". Told by Merrill I believe x

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  8. Country folk eh ... they just keep on going.

    Our neighbour, Mary is in her eighties and still runs the B&B that she and her husband retired into after a career teaching. After running it for over 25 years together he died in 2012 and she just kept on going. Each year she says she will finish but then her guests stay, love it and book themselves in for a return visit next year so she can't bring herself to disappoint ... and she loves the company they bring travelling to our little corner of Wales from all over the world.

    She bakes all the bread they eat, makes all the jams and chutneys and provides tailor made breakfasts to her guests specifications single handedly. With help from a part-time gardener (for the heavy jobs and grass cutting) she keep over an acre of flower and fruit bush gardens looking magnificent. And our local sheep farmer uses her fields for his sheep in return for looking after hedges and gates for her.

    She makes me feel tired just watching her dashing here there and everywhere in between catering for her guests and being there to welcome them in. She's on higher level Pilates, goes walking and recently hill climbing and is regularly to be found on a 'quiet' day marching round Bodnant gardens where until recently she was a volunteer 'guest welcomer'.

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    1. Gosh ... that was a long comment, sorry ;-)

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    2. Never apologise for lovely comments x

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  9. They are both "Bloody Grand". I hope I will be too. Its blistering hot here too.

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  10. The longer we keep moving, the longer we keep moving. My parents retired at your age, in his mid 80's my father remarked that if he had know he was going to live so long, he would have kept working.

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  11. Really enjoyed "meeting" those two. Your writing made me feel right there.

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  12. The lesson of this post is to keep moving. Once you stop, it is over.

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    1. Indeed.........no waiting for god

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  13. It's like an episode from "The Archers" with Farmer John Gray played by Matt Lucas. Cue theme music.

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    1. How VERY dare you

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    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    3. Okay then...if you insist... played by Russell sodding Crowe!

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  14. Love the country folk. These new knees are GREAT. Got one myself back in January. Best thing I ever did!

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  15. You were the baby of that group!

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  16. I admire these men, they are a lot more active than I am. Shame shame!

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  17. Age doesn't define you. Your actions do! If you live life fully and do the things that make you happy, then you live a full life and happiness comes from all that you do.

    Keep walking and talking. You discover and encounter life's beautiful and wondrous moments when you're present.

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  18. I guess the 'lesson' to learn from this, John, is to never stop moving if one intends to live a long life.

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  19. Another absolutely beautiful post.

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  20. I love your post!

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  21. One of my neighbours is 83 and still farms full time, he will tell you that he is slowing down, he went from milking 35 cows and raising about 60 beef cows at 80 years old, to now raising about 85 beef cows and has retired from milking, that is still a lot of work for a man any age.

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  22. The Welsh are a tough breed.

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  23. They make them hardy round your neck of the woods as they do here John. My dear farmer was an exception. You sound to have so many friends in your lovely village. Don't leave until you are sure. x

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  24. 'He's bloody grand for 94!' No kidding! What an inspiration! You've got your dogs to keep you moving and that's good.

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  25. I did not see that punch line coming!! Love it.

    My mother at 88 worries about her friend in her nineties "failing" . . . and I worry about my mother failing as she is having her troubles, too, but doesn't realize it.

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  26. It's the Wartime and rationing generation. They are still tough, I wonder if the farming helped was it a reserved occupation?
    My Dad is a sprightly 93 but he had a motto of 'keep your own bones'. He may have been told this by an orthopedic surgeon.

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  27. A lovely post John! Reminds me of how strong my mum is. I love her.
    Greetings Maria xx

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  28. I know several busy people in their 80s ,they are so enthusiastic and I love to bump into them on my travels x

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  29. Some of the ladies I clean for in the local village are in their 90s. They're still driving, going abroad and lead full social lives. Arilx

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  30. Peter's mother is 97 going on 67. Married and moved 5 miles from one farm to another farm and has never moved anywhere else.

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  31. If I make it to 94, I hope I'm as fit as Trevor. But more likely I'll be a pathetic old wreck.

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  32. BTW I like the photo of the church in sun and shadow.

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  33. What wonderful story telling John this could be the start of a book hats of to Trevor and Basil.

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  34. I would love to have a fraction of their energy and agility.

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  35. I had to look up loBsided which it seems is not the same as lopsided but is a real word. Lovely photos but your green Wales looks parched and dry. In your garden, do you not water the flowers to keep them going?

    lizzy

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  36. Fantastic. Hard work is good for body and soul.

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  37. That's what I want. To be bloody grand for...

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  38. A lovely post John, thank you. Our elderly neighbour in France can't get around well these days but he can still climb on to his battered old tractor and trundles around the countryside and inspects his vines on it.

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  40. Yes, a really nice post. Thank you.

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  41. Yes! A bloody grand post!

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  42. So, so beautiful! Fabulous!

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  43. It’s really a great and helpful piece of information. I am happy that you simply shared this helpful information with us.

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  44. I will take a walk, with start/stop visits any day . . .
    So much more fun than a “work out.” . . .
    Cheers to Trevor . . . Basil . . .
    Mary . . . and you John . . . too!

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  45. Great article..I am looking so forward to your blogcomment and
    I love your page on your post.. That is so pretty..
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    ReplyDelete

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