Sunday, 13 April 2014

Who ate the tulips?

I can always count on the dog to be on her worst behaviour when the stakes are high!  And the stakes are high right now. We have exhausted ourselves this past week, bringing the house and garden to near perfection in time for the photographer and I was so pleased with my matching pots of carefully nurtured tulip bulbs by the French doors in the courtyard garden, and looking forward to seeing them burst into glorious flower. 

They have been growing in the courtyard for weeks and the dog has totally ignored them up to now, but yesterday, sensing change and tension in the air, she totally vandalised one of the pots, ate the tulip heads and some of the bulbs, discarding the leaves: debris and compost strewn everywhere.  She was very apologetic and chastened after a serious ticking off and confinement to the kitchen for a couple of hours, where she can do no harm.

We are putting our lovely house on the market after 5 years and much indecision.  This is a beautiful house and we love the village, the surrounding countryside and coast, but it's not my home.  I have no roots here, no real reason for being in this place, especially now the boat is in the Baltic for the foreseeable future and the sailing was a big reason for moving up here.

We have been debating this issue for quite some time and failed to find a resolution, but things have crystallised now, following the sudden death of an old friend in Kent and the subsequent fallout, and I realised that most of the people who really mean something to me, who are part of my history and my family's history live in Kent and that I need to let go of what we have here and go where my heart is, where I have some good friends, people I can really share with.   Meeting new people, making new friends is healthy, but I need my old friends too, the ones I spent so many years forging bonds with, sharing dramas, school runs and stroppy teenagers.  People whose children I have known since they were tiny and who know mine.

So the house goes on the market next week and my remaining tulip pot has been moved to a more secure spot to be jealously guarded from the attentions of my naughty Labrador!


  1. Hello Marianne,

    It is so true that animals do pick up tensions and such a pity that your dog decided to wreck your beautiful Tulip display at just the wrong moment. Still, even the hardest heart could not fail to melt at that apologetic look....

    Moving house is always stressful but you seem very clear in your mind about your plans and that is a positive step forward. Life does bring significant moments when one does need to reappraise what one is doing. We wish you every success wherever life may take you!

    1. It is stressful and I do lie awake at night wondering if we are doing the right thing. Thank you for the kind wishes!

  2. Oh dear! We've had Golden Retrievers who would get up to considerable dog mischief -- garden damage, included. But none ever ate tulips!
    Good luck with the selling of your home. Sounds as if you have many good reasons for moving, but I imagine the next months will be emotional ones in many ways. Take care.

    1. They are going to be gorgeous deep red tulips and I have been so looking forward to seeing them flower. Who would ever imagine she would go for them? Thanks for the good wishes. I think I know in my heart what I need to do, but this is our dream house and that's tough.

  3. Good luck on your sale - I hope it happens quickly for you. I think the pup was just trying to help redesign the pots.

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  5. She knows something's up, and is feeling it..... but just think, the destruction of tulips isn't nearly as tragic as the stair carpet, or your best boots...... Moving to be closer to friends is a perfect reason to sell up; what made your house beautiful is mainly what you made of it, and you can take that magic with you. Good luck with the selling part - that's always the worst!


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