Sunday, 4 March 2007

Re's Cottage

Well, we knew there would be something strange, because it was so cheap. Cottages in Pretty Land aren't cheap. And Re's Cottage is. Dig joked that it might be next to a fish farm.

He was right, of sorts. We went to look at Re's Cottage tonight, after driving four hours through the relentless rain battering the car on the motorway. Aunty Em's been travelling behind, probably driving the entire journey in first gear, on her way back home. But she's curious about the Cottage so she's detouring to see it with us. Probably sussing out her babysitting duties. And we could find plenty of opportunities for those.

When we find it, Re's Cottage is adjacent to the kitchens of a Chinese restaurant. That would be fine, because the children adore prawn crackers, I like the rice and Dig goes for Lemon Chicken. In fact at first view the kitchens are so close that I reckon we could shout the order out from the upstairs window and the chef could reach out the kitchen door to bang on our front door when it's ready. I'd hope there'd be no delivery charge.

The kitchen is not the only thing, of course. Running alongside the boundary wall to Re's Cottage there is an enormous ventilation pipe, pushing its way from a hole knocked through the wall of the Chinese restaurant, and turning upwards like a grand steel turret on its way up to the sky. Now don't imagine the ventilation pipe is anything inconsequential like a tumble drier hose or anything like it. Oh no. It is an enormous shaft that the children could go crawling through if they ever had a mind. It's huge, metal, rattling, wheezing and vibrating, and looks like part of the set of Metropolis. And somehow they've managed to squeeze this monstrosity into a tiny back lane dating from the fourteenth century. And I'd bet they didn't get planning permission.

We don't see the cottage at its best, admitedly. It's dark, the Chinese restaurant is going at full pelt to turn out those bamboo shoots and it's raining so hard that I'm feeling as if thousands of tiny hammers are trying to nail me into the stonework.

'We need to see it in daylight' says Dig, optimistically. And we set off to the Edwardian Towers in the middle of nowhere to spend the night.

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