On the Mountain Side

Saturday 1st August 2020

We stayed up a mountain in Snowdonia with Herbert Molotov and St Anselm. A turkey was spoken of as likely to be removed from the freezer. Despite communism on the part of Herbert, St Anselm has acquired a substantial extra Welsh premises, a handsome farmhouse with grounds and marble bathroom. We couldn’t have been more comfortable. Royston was inclined to appear nude which couldn’t be stopped. The great thing was building up to his appearance on TV (not nude) in a Royal documentary on the Saturday evening and in the meantime whether he should appear in some left-leaning productions from Channel 4. Herbert Molotov confused the issue by insisting that the late King was romantically involved with Anthony Blunt which he had on reputable authority from a Cambridge don whose wife is not unassociated with appearing on TV very often. The conversation had an odd background of sheep and mountains. One of the sheep was dead and lying just beyond the boundary fence. Herbert Molotov thought he would saw it up for the table. He described his routine dismantling of found pheasants in repulsive detail and thought nothing of advancing to a sheep.

Quite honestly Herbert had that look on his face while menacing thus but this was the merest flicker while the foreground surged on of Royston’s TV contributions and the Royal Family. As we settled to watch the show finally Royston was still talking in fact and in the end we had to shout him down so we could hear what he was saying on the TV.

The turkey was understood to have been withdrawn, never removed from the freezer. I thought this a step in the right direction, sensing that the bird would be overwhelming and it wasn’t Christmas. Royston thought that somehow Herbert had prevented it although St Anselm was the martyr of the kitchen with Herbert working unseen to cause his companion eventually to explode. Herbert loves to light the touch paper and run, shrieking with glee. St Anselm fumed that were left to Herbert there would be nothing but pasta with pesto whereupon Herbert said he didn’t care about food in any case. Royston thought it was a vigorous lusty power-play between the two that might extend to all parts of the house and times.

So gammon steaks were the upshot. Does anybody know what it is to cater for a weekend house party? The strain and worry, for the deadlines of breakfast, lunch, tea and dinner are the deadliest of the deadlines.

We walked in the mountains, a good climb and offered unwanted advice as to how the grounds around the farmhouse might be cultivated. Herbert has already built a folly and cleared brambles on a monumental scale. Royston recommended Acer Griseum, then ¬†offered a novel view of the Abdication which was the Royal Family’s great knack of getting rid of undesirable elements, aided as necessary by the Establishment. Edward VIII was thought no good. That was the real reason for refusing his marriage to Mrs Simpson and forcing the Abdication. A simple ejection exercise. Prince Andrew has met the same fate by a different means.

Later we returned to London by car. Last year, returning from the other, Cromer, residence of this pair was the occasion of the great gunboat incident re: tomato feed which Royston said he could not get it into my head was not just to produce leaf growth, but flowers also. My mistake was to try to say that I had always thought otherwise but I could never get as far as to indicate that I was not unwilling to be persuaded differently because Royston became exasperated all over again and told me that it really was time I had a proper look at the directions on the bottle.

This year saw an advance.

The subject inevitably arises, whether bidden or not. Have you grasped it yet? Royston inquired. Tomato feed to induce flowering. Suddenly I thought, sudden wave, it would be just the thing for those Verbascums that never flower.

The Welsh Background: Typical of a near Communist to Secure such a View

The Welsh Background: Typical of a near Communist to Secure such a View

St Anselm's New Welsh Setting

St Anselm’s New Welsh Setting

St Anselm and Herbert Molotov - Their New Surroundings

St Anselm and Herbert Molotov – Their New Surroundings





Posted Sunday, August 2, 2020 under Adrian Edge day by day.

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