One of our greatest pleasures is also one of the simplest, something both Jacqui and I indulge in pretty well every day of the year and pretty well any time of the day or night.
It costs us nothing, is always there, ready for us to take advantage of and there is rarely a time when conditions prevent us from enjoying it.
It is the veranda situated on the front of the house, about two meters wide, and we keep it pretty well fully furnished, just as if it were an added room, boasting cozy arm chairs, tables and even a few pots of flowers, though these tend to be superfluous, with the whole of our front garden spread out for us to enjoy!
The veranda has a couple of extra advantages too; the front of our house points due east, which means we get the early morning sun pouring into us as we sit there sipping out coffee, pleasant even during the winter months and sometimes almost uncomfortably hot during summer – but we’re prepared to put up with that!
The other advantage about the position of our veranda is the fact that the prevailing wind in our part of the country is pretty well always from the south-west, and the veranda being on the north and east of the house means that even on a windy or a wet day we are beautifully sheltered from the elements.
We can sit there, in the midst of a rainstorm, bone dry and lightly dressed while our neighbors, going about their business, have to run to wherever they’re going, wrapped up to the eyeballs in waterproof clothing, in order not to get too wet.
We naturally give them a cheery wave as they go by, but they don’t always respond!
Of course, on any one of the many pleasant days that we sit out there, our passing neighbors will stop for a chat before they carry on, so I guess they don’t hold grudges against us because of our advantage on the unpleasant days.
We also have a very nice garden at the front of the house, created over several years by Jacqui, (I don’t grow plants, I kill ‘em), and now mainly looked after for us by a gardener we’ve employed since we both reached the age of “useless”, that time of life when just looking at work like digging or standing up, takes your breath away, so you have to sit down again.
I’ve attached a photo of the view from our veranda, so you can see what a pleasant view it provides, with the extra advantage that the main street through the town also runs right past us, (during the rush hour we get really excited because as many as one car a minute might go by then!).
We have a family of magpies who visit us most mornings, insisting on being fed. Jacqui is a sucker for this – ANY animal that appears here gets fed immediately by her, whether they need it or not, neighborhood cats, other wild birds, the odd rabbit or two and even, very occasionally a fox all know where there’s a feed to be had; I’m sure they leave marks on our gate, like tramps used to, telling them the good news.
I am joking a little of course, but we do love to see the various creatures, many of whom get quite tame, not to mention those magpies, who serenade us until they get their food. And the main food they all like? It’s grated cheese – Jacqui has to buy a new pack nearly every week, to keep everyone happy; I daren’t think what might happen if we forgot to go shopping or something!
So, all in all, we both consider ourselves very lucky that we live in a house pointing in exactly the right direction, with the breeze coming from exactly the right direction, and with plenty of wild creatures, ready to entertain us, in exchange for cheese.
Who would want to live anywhere else!
© 2023 Brian Lee