When we (eventually and sleepily) made it out of bed this morning, we had NO IDEA that today would be really special. We thought we were in for our usual routine, but with the added excitement of the special Nethercott ‘Pop-Up Shop’ to buy Nethercott souvenirs for ourselves and our families (maybe!).
All groups were out for their usual routine of the three jobs (you know them all by now) before breakfast.
As usual, we just missed babies being born; there were new lambs AND new calves, but we had to make do with seeing them already with their mums. Lambs and calves were standing within minutes! At Parsonage, Sausage Roll the retired Kune-Kune pig was feeling a bit grumpy. She had come out to see Group 1 yesterday, but didn’t feel like talking to Group 2 today. It took some persuading from Stuart before she would come out of her house.
At breakfast, Miss Carty had some Good News for us. Our excellent persuasive letters had paid off; a certain Very Important and Famous Neighbour had been impressed by them (and probably the accompanying letter she put with it!) and….. MICHAEL MORPURGO WOULD BE COMING TO SEE US at 11.45!!
We went out for the second part of our jobs in a state of high excitement; Group 1 to groom the ponies, turn them out into the field and muck out, Group 2 to walk round the farms on a stock check and Group 3 to cook pizzas for tea!
11.45 was here in a flash and we were sent upstairs to check our dorms (the dormesto tidy competition is turning into a real contest between all 4 dorms – more of this later!) and to keep out of the way until Michael was here.
At 11.45 he arrived while the staff were having coffee; and there was a scream of excitement from the hordes gathered at the top of the stairs! We came down into the Quiet Room and sat to listen to him. He spent about half an hour with us answering questions; something he hardly ever does any more, because he is so busy. We felt very privileged to be one of the very few. We had to rush the shop and visit it in shifts, as we spent so much time talking to Michael. He answered our questions very skilfully – and very entertainingly!
After a filling lunch of bangers and mash with carrots and cheesy leeks (followed by fruit salad) we split into 2 groups; Groups 2 + 3 to shift stones and fill potholes in the lane for the milk lorry and Group 1 to Bridgetown to crush barley and make ash faggots for the fire. Group 1 were also filmed for David’s local cricket team DVD, showing what the team members do ‘in their spare time’!! We also witnessed the arrival of David’s brand new £30,000 tractor – he’s going to plough with it tomorrow.
The home-made pizzas went down well with some salad for tea and followed by delicious chocolate brownies. Only Group 3 went out this evening to the dairy, as Group 1 had done their task at Bridgetown at 4pm and Group 2 brought in the ponies also at 4pm.
After such a memorable day, some community games, hot choc and a story then bed was a great wind-down.
PS Watch out for the Dorm Tidy competition in a future blog – this has been the best year ever for participation and sheer ingenuity. It will be a hard act to follow, Year 5!! Challenge!!