I feel a bubble of excitement.
One of those fizzy tremors that begin somewhere deep down and spread with tingling pins-and-needley sparks to the top of your head, the tips of your fingers and toes. I close my fists, do a huggy sort of shake and can’t help smiling!
Should I tell you what’s caused this or should I keep it to myself a little longer? No I can’t, so here it is…
Went to collect Olly from uni yesterday. He’s finished, having sat his finals last week. Not too good…he’s suffering from a glandular infection, bad antibiotic reaction and a broken heart. Seems to go hand in hand with finals. Between text and phone call he intimated that he had something to run past me, something he thought I might…? ‘Wait till I see you, mum’
Olly is youngest son, number four. Charming, lazy, gorgeous, and surprisingly shy. He let me know from the moment he hit that ‘you’re-only-my-mum-and-you-and-all-you-do-embarrasses-me-totally’ age that the last thing he ever, ever wanted was to be part of the farm/business etc. It was a mugs game (he could be right). Having once been an enthusiastic helper he shunned anything and everything farm. Shutting himself in his room, turning all his energy into becoming a skilled acoustic guitar player when not out with his friends or body surfing the North Devon waves.
I wasn’t surprised…farming is hard work, a slog; painful and unpredictable, its rewards are not monetary. To make any money not only do you have to have a driving passion but be inventive, innovative and entrepreneurial, have huge resources of energy and a good measure of optimism. A small organic farm is not going to make you Alan Sugar!
Knowing my sons quite well, I had a little itchy inkling that he could…but no, that’s wishful thinking. I kind of ran my thought past Ben (big brother, son number one) and Will (nearest brother, son number three). What do you think? ‘Na’ they said ‘but…well, umm, it’s a thought’.
I then came to the conclusion, that was it – yes, of course – he was going to join Joe (second brother, son number two) out in New Zealand – yes that was most definitely it!
So I found it difficult to contain myself as I tripped over wine bottles, scrunched empty beer cans, fought through overflowing black plastic bags, slipped on discarded toast and CD cases as we trudged back and forth, up and down stairs that were home to various bicycle bits, pieces of broken chairs, shoes and underwear – filling the truck with the detritus of three years of student living. ‘I guess its New Zealand isn’t it? What you wanted to tell me?’ I blurted out…
‘What, what’s that? New Zealand? There’s an idea! No, seriously, hadn’t thought of that! Hey guys – what about New Zealand?’ ‘Mum, wait till we’re in the car.’
Then it came. Yes, he’d been thinking. No it wasn’t a knee jerk reaction to finals. He’d thought before that. He didn’t want to live in a city, didn’t want the monotony of a 9-5 job. He felt he’d been in denial – following in mum’s footsteps etc. Wanted to do something that was diverse, a challenge. Really wanted to give it a go. Yup – had thought about the crap side. But all things considered would I give him a chance, could he come back and farm?
Head’s in a whirl. Plans flashing before my eyes. Hang on, hang on. Might not work, might be a total flop. But even if it is, no matter. Nothing lost, nothing gained. Opens so many opportunities…
I feel a bubble of excitement.
One of those fizzy tremors that begin somewhere deep down and spread with tingling pins-and-needley sparks to the top of your head the tips of your fingers and toes. I close my fists, do a huggy sort of shake and can’t help smiling…