I started writing this diary on Tuesday 11th April. I have not written a page every day but in the weeks since the first entry I think I have written to you some sixty or more times. In those weeks my life has been turned completely upside down. So here we are on the first day of August. What does this month have in store ?
The garden at the back of my home is dominated by a silver birch tree. It is so large we had a tree surgeon and his team climb up it with ropes in the spring to cut out some of the higher branches and give it a better shape. I am told that in a year or so this surgery will make it look even better and more dominant than it already is. A few years back my wife planted a jasmine against the tree, this has now grown into thee lower branches and gives off a lovely smell.
I nicked the tree when it as a tiny sapling from Woburn Woods on The Duke of Bedford's Estate. At the time my son Peter was a very small baby. The tree is known as The Peter Tree.
To the right of the front door of my home is a twisted hazel tree. I did not nick this from anywhere but paid money for it at a garden centre. This is known as The Nanny Tree. When my grandmother died, just a few weeks short of her one hundredth birthday, we got this tree in her memory.
Here is my Nan with great grandchildren Matthew, Peter - as in The Peter Tree and Rebekah.
Last week I took Peter's oldest daughter to a beautiful area of woodland outside Bristol. She, Maureen and I took Jake for a walk. Peter's daughter Katherine had my camera and took hundreds, and I do mean hundreds, of pictures as we walked along the pathways.
These woods outside Bristol are not unlikethe woods on the Duke of Bedford's Estate from where I nicked that tiny silver birch which has now grown into The Peter Tree.
While I was walking, while Katherine was clicking the camera like crazy and Jake was cocking his leg against every tree in the wood I nicked another sapling. This is an oak tree sapling. My wife did not approve and said how would it be when that grew to maturity in the garden ? Somehow I donot think we will be around then to worry about the problem.
But to go along with Maureen's thinking, at least for the moment, the stolen oak sapling is in a small pot. I will nurture this for a year or so then when Maureen is not looking plant it in the ground !
This will be The Rebekah Tree.
Over the past few weeks I have slowed down with my writing, just too many things happening. My diary's readership has fallen away a little, yesterday 27 people read my sarcastic page about burgers in deep space ! I wonder how many will read today's entry. I have not written very much for The Bridge House but do have at least two thousand words to type up. I need to discipline myself a bit and get back to writing more.
I have decided on the ending for The Bridge House which I hope will come as a surprise toreaders when they get to the end of the book. The current chapter is dominated by Billy, the uncle I never knew. Billy will soon have his young life ended when his aircraft is shot down on 8th March 1945. The story will then pass to my father. I am setting the foundations for his tale but I have something up my sleeve, something Winston Churchill called his Ultra Secret. I guess I had better get writing.
I wonder if I could bring The Rebekah Tree into the book.
I have an idea.
It will be easy to pick out The Rebekah Tree in my garden, it will be the tree that is always smiling.
I will write a SMILING TREE into the story, a place where a character in the story goes to think and find inspiration for his work. He always comes away smiling as he has found what he needs.
The Rebekah Tree - The Smiling Tree.