We had a chap come to prune our neighbour's overhanging trees in the winter (with permission, but she didn't even offer to pay towards it!)
The tree surgeon's partner has a small plot just inside the allotment site and there is often a pile of wood chips with a 'Help yourself' notice - but I have never managed to get some before everyone else has helped themselves!
So I asked if he could dump/tip the equivalent of a dozen barrow loads onto the concrete outside my shed, leaving room for me to open the door.
I had a call a couple of weeks ago to say that he had left some - and today was the first time I could get up there.
I was in for a bit of a shock!
It is quite difficult to show you the scale of this massive pile!
Apparently it was a big truck load according to his wife, but as she rightly said, I can always put a 'Help yourself' notice on it if I don't use it all up!
The above photo was after I had shifted 10 barrow loads!
It was a really dark dull day today - which is perfect for me - but I had to brighten all the photos.
Mr Lottie went into town so I diligently worked and worked and worked until he came up to find me, almost three hours later!
I have moved 26 wheel barrows full, each held 16 heaped shovels full.
I wouldn't normally count them. but it was the only thing that kept me going as it was exhausting!
It is at least three inches deep. Underneath is membrane but over the years it was starting to break up a here and there and the dreaded Dock weed seedlings started to appear, and were difficult to dig up.
I need to do a bit of weeding on the right hand side - just winter weeds before I put some on there, and I might move the rubber path along the middle, as I have so much shredded wood so I can cover right across.
I arrived home thoroughly exhausted having worked myself to almost a standstill - but I felt so elated to be outside, up my windy allotment, without a soul about, and doing some physical work - you just can't beat it!
I am sitting resting now after a long hot shower, and salmon shanties for lunch, and smelling now of Coco Chanel. And if I don't ache too much tomorrow and it isn't raining, I'll be back there shifting some more!
(Mr Lottie fancies a bonfire!)