Tales from the Finchbottom Vale – (29) Love at a Canter (Part 02)
So her professional life was on track and with her move to Mornington so was her personal life, at least in part the only fly in the ointment being her love life.
Because she had always planned that she would be all loved up and in a stable relationship by the time she was 30 and that deadline was barely a month away.
Hayley was a tall girl just shy of 6 feet, with a happy smiling face and rosy cheeks and short blonde curls.
Her height had always been a bugbear for her relationship wise because she always seemed to attract small men who clearly saw her as a challenge.
In truth it was difficult in her job to meet suitable candidates most of the men she met were either married or attached and the ones that weren’t were clearly unattached for good reason.
The other problem was that even if she did meet someone eligible and not vertically challenged she wasn’t always seen in the most favourable light when covered in muck or with her arm upside a cow’s rear end.
Life for Hayley Gwilym as the resident Vet in Mornington meant a lot of her calls were to Local Farms in and around the village, Manor, Mereside, Smithfield’s, Windmill, Wood Hill and Vale Farms but her territory stretched much father which was why on a sunny morning in August she was driving to Copper Beech Farm in the Dulcets.
The Dulcets consisted of a collection of villages and hamlets such as Dulcet Meadow, Dulcet St Mary, Dulcet Green and Dulcet-on-Brooke to name but a few, and it was a predominantly rural area.
She drove into the cobbled yard of Copper Beech Farm and was greeted by the owner Anthony Holmes, a tall slight figure with sandy hair and hazel eyes, who was the new owner and only arrived a few months earlier.
It wasn’t a big yard as farm yards go but it was a very neat and tidy one thanks to his farm manager Charlotte Clode.
“Hello Hayley” Anthony said “What brings you here this morning”
“Oh well you’ll find Charlotte in the stables I expect” he said
“Ok thanks” she responded just as a tall and skinny 22 year old waif with pixie cut straw coloured hair appeared from the stable block.
A look passed between Charlotte and Anthony and it was obvious to Hayley that there was something smouldering between the two of them but nothing seemed to have happened as yet.
“Hi Charlotte” she said “Where’s the patient?”
“Hello Hayley, he’s in his stall”
“Oh ok so who am I seeing today?”
“Hitch” Charlotte replied “He has a rather nasty gash on his face”
“I don’t think I’ve had the pleasure of this old chap” she said as she approached the stall and a slightly battered grey.
“No he’s not been with us long” Charlotte replied
“Well you’ve certainly been in the wars haven’t you fella” Hayley said as she approached then directed a question at Charlotte
“Luke was riding …”
“Luke?” Hayley interrupted
“Yes Luke Barrowman, the owner, he was riding along the Broad Path through Brownhill Woods when someone on a mountain bike crossed the path at speed and caused him to rear up and he cut his face in the bushes”
“Well most of the cuts are superficial but this one will need stapling so I’ll need your help with that”