Tales from the Finchbottom Vale – (06) It was the Argyle Socks (Part 02)
Tallulah took the credit for sealing the deal between Aunty Phil and the Reverend Cockcroft, when pride and guilt threatened to keep them apart.
It was a damp drizzly morning as July was coming to a close and Philomena and Biscuit had been out for their usual walk but neither of them were disappointed when the walk was over.
When they arrived at the boot room door she opened it and the dog beat her through it and then she toweled Biscuit dry before kicking off her boots and hanging up her coat.
And afterwards she went in search of the kettle, when she reached the kitchen Tallulah was sitting at the table pouring a cup of tea from a large tea pot.
“Is there another one in there Tally?” she asked
“Yes Aunty, get yourself a mug”
After Tallulah had done the honour’s Philomena took a tentative sip.
“Oooh that’s nice” she said
“Did you enjoy your walk Aunty Phil?”
“No not much it’s a bit miserable out there today” she replied
“Have you been out walking with the Vicar lately?” Tallulah asked
“No, why?” she asked sufficiently.
“It’s just that I thought you two had become inseparable” Tally remarked
“That was only because of the Fête”
“Oh that’s a shame” Tally said
“Well you’ve had a bit of a spring in your step for the past few weeks” she replied
“And you didn’t let a bit of rain dampen your enthusiasm, you’d have been out there for hours on a day like this”
“Oh I don’t know about that” Aunty Phil protested
“And you looked good together” Tally added
“Now you’re just being silly”
“And I’ll tell you something else Aunty, I think Carole would have been pleased”
“Would she?” Philomena asked with surprise
“Yes she was very fond of you Aunty”
Philomena was thoughtful for a few moments as she finished her tea, then she stood up and walked around and kissed the top of Tallulah’s head
“You have wisdom beyond your year’s honey”
“It’s a gift” she replied
“Come on then dog, it’s time to get wet again” Aunty Phil said
Those words of encouragement did the trick and spurred Philomena on to grasp the nettle and as a result at the age of 46 she was engaged to be married and why the bond between her and Tallulah was even stronger.
Tallulah, Philomena and Biscuit set off from Mornington just after 8 o’clock, 24 hours later than planned.
The day before there had been a hastily convened meeting of the St George clan to discuss the rumoured redevelopment of the Seaview Hotel in Sharpington which the Mornington Estate had an interest in saving.
The meeting ended with a unanimous decision.
It was a lovely morning as they left Mornington and headed out into the country towards Highfinch and Tally was hopeful to be on the course by ten o’clock.
The countryside of the Vale was beautiful enough but as they got closer to the Pepperstock Hills it got even more so.
The village of Highfinch sat just on the edge of the Pepperstock Hills and Lily Green Hollows Golf Club separated the village from the Hamlet of Lily Green.
It was a very exclusive Golf Club with a large number of grand House’s in both village and hamlet backing on to it.
It was not widely known but the Golf Club and all the plush dwelling attached to the course belonged to the Mornington Estate.
It came into their ownership in the late 1980’s when a developer tried to buy it to create a luxury housing estate, Gabriel’s father Valentine, who was the then Baron, stepped in and saved it.
Because it was so exclusive the membership fees were exorbitant but they had to be because the Golf Club and all the properties that surrounded it had to pay their own way.
Gabriel hated the fact that the club was strictly for the rich but it was a necessary evil to preserve it and protect it from the developers.