Yesterday was a miserable day (weather wise) as I joined a group of conservationists (if there is such a word!!) to dig holes for new benches to be placed in the Ripple Nature Reserve. It rained and rained and rained and then rained a little bit more - we were all soaked - even those who were covered from head to toe in the 'proper' waterproofs soon discovered that they were not going to escape the feeling of water running down their skin under all the layers of protective clothing. I gave up wearing the hood on my raincoat because the rain trickled from it on to my face into my eyes and I couldn't see a thing..
This was a first for me - making tea outside in the pouring rain! no sooner had I put a cup out it was full of rain water mixed with hot water from the flask, a soggy teabag and milk :)) but we had fun, laughed and had some very interesting conversations whilst digging and drinking.
This young man hadn't planned to help when he started out on his morning jog: however, when stopped in his tracks by Francesca who asked if he would like to help? true to his word he came back after his jog and we were extremely grateful for his help as he dug through bricks to make a hole for one of the legs of the bench...
We got talking and I discovered that he is a Christian and attends Holy Trinity Brompton in London but was looking forward to the new church opening on the estate. I told him that I was part of an Ecumenical group and we would be holding monthly services in the new church from September. He was so thrilled and said he would attend with friends.. WOW music, as well as rain water, to my ears :))
The added bonus for me on such days like today - is the opportunity for so many conversations, the chance to get know people in depth and the reverse happens too :) folk start questioning me about the church etc because we are on neutral ground and involved in an activity.
I wouldn't say by any means say that I was the greatest of help!! but I hope my tea making skills under all conditions proved to be useful - well I certainly did not received any complaints :))
Now this is the scene outside my house today.. blue sky and the sun is shinning but somehow the rain yesterday made the day memoriable and, today, those who will be walking in the nature reserve can enjoy the sun and the views over the nature reserve whilst sitting, for the first time, on new benches placed there for them :))