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My, I had a busy day yesterday. What did I do? I was a volunteer waitress at a wedding.

“What did you do that for?” I hear you ask.

Well, a friend’s daughter was getting married and because they were having the reception in the church hall after the ceremony, they needed help. They had hired a hog-roast but the bride’s mother had bought all the desserts and the drinks (non alcoholic). They needed people to put out jugs of squash (for America readers that’s fruity drinks you dilute with water, rather like cordials but not so strong) on each table and make sure they are kept replenished. Then the large cakes and cheesecakes that had been bought needed to be sliced, put into dishes and laid out ready for the guests to come and take their pick once the hog-roast was all served. And then bottles of ‘Schloer’ were to be put out on the tables ready for the toast.

There were supposed to be six of us doing all this – but it turned out to just be me and another lady who was a friend of the bride’s mother. A very nice person called Heather and we got on like a house on fire. The family were very worried that Heather and I were doing it all alone but we coped very well indeed; in fact, as we remarked, if there had been six of us we would have been falling over each other. Two worked very well. Fortunately, the people who had volunteered to clear up afterwards were there and onto the job; Heather and I helped with that too. Boy, was I tired when I got home!

But the day wasn’t done; I still had to go pick fruit up in our son’s garden (which used to be ours until recently). It was a welcome bit of peace after the bustle of the day. But, when I’m in that garden, ‘Robin’ comes to nag me – why? Because that’s where the story was born – and where ‘Robin’ found his magic ring.  Robin’s Ring is special, not in the way that the ring in ‘Lord of the Rings’ is, (my preshusss) for I couldn’t pinch that idea. In any case, I couldn’t have a child with a ring that would ultimately make him bad like that one does. Robin has severe health problems and he can’t run around and do things that other children can. To his astonishment and delight, he discovers that the ‘ordinary’ ring amongst the leaf-mould in his garden can actually make him strong and able to do things he’d only dreamed of doing before. It can do other things too…  So, Robin is desperate to have me tell his story:

“When are you going to let me come out, mum? You wrote my story two years ago and you know I want to be out there, children are waiting for me.”

“Well, I’m sorry, Robin my boy, you have to wait a while longer.”

“What for?”

“Well, mostly because I’m still waiting for my daughter-in-law to finish the illustrations; a children’s book has to have some pictures you know.”

“I know. Can’t you make her hurry up?”

“Well, I’ve been trying for quite a long time; she’s done a very nice front cover but she just does not seem to have time to do much because she has three little boys to look after.”

“Oh dear. Can’t you draw them yourself?”

“No, I can’t draw for toffee.”

“You’re a bit useless really aren’t you? Bet I could draw them.”

“I suppose I am. I bet you could, but seeing as you’re a figment of my imagination, you can’t, can you?”

“Hmm. Looks like I’ll have to wait some more then. I hope it’s done before next raspberry season.”

“So do I, Robin, so do I.”

But I’m not going to hold my breath…

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