Provincial Almoners Letter from Andover

The other amazing building that we saw was the Italian Church, created by the Italian prisoners of war, who joined together two Nissan huts and decorated the inside as if it was a church. By only using cement coating they created what looks like a mosaic covering on the walls. It was very thought provoking and emotional to witness. Another wish crossed off of Pat‚Äôs bucket list was to see Fingles‚Äô Cave, the captain of the ship slowed right down and took us as close to the Island that was possible. 

The weather so far North was nowhere near as hot as you had suffered that week, people in the Orkneys and Shetland have experienced a very wet, cold summer but we did take with us a little sunshine. During the cruise we only experienced a short fall of rain.

The garden though, like everyone’s, has suffered from the lack of rainfall, the lawn is very brown and dry. During our time away, our eldest daughter did water the vegetation for us but left us with a brand new hose pipe, during one day of watering she was surprised that the patio was very wet and then realised that she had caught the hosepipe in one of the rose bushes and caused a tear in the material. This cost her the new donation to us. We have a magnificent sunflower growing just outside of the kitchen window, it is abundant with seeds ready for the birds. Since arriving back Pat has seen a few goldfinches, many starlings, thrushes and sparrows, perhaps this in thanks for her feeding them so well.

I am writing this a little later than normal on this Saturday as we have had a bit of an interesting morning in having some of the family visit us. Our eldest grandson arrived with his family, which included his son, Arthur, then his mother, our eldest daughter turned up. So we had four generations having a good get together and chat for a couple of hours. I feel very blessed, as I am sure that many of you are, by having a loving, close family who are interested in one another. We have had one upset this week, our youngest grandsons rabbit was found dead, after being attacked, perhaps by a fox. Very emotional and heart pulling.

Covid does not seem to have lost its grip with a number of people still being infected. Some Brethren are still uneasy about mixing in larger numbers, and I fully appreciate this. There is no compulsion on anyone to feel that they should attend if they still feel that they wish to be cautious. Please look after yourselves and your loved ones.

Best wishes to you all.

Malcolm Lloyd, P.G.S.D., Prov. Grand Almoner