HS2 continues to drag us down but hopefully the end is near. Everything is now prepared for the Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) and even though HS2 is still refusing to submit the report that 'substantiated' their very low valuation we are going ahead anyway. Although I have been very down about the whole situation and our uncertain future it put everything in to perspective when I got a call from Rob (Jaine's husband) earlier this week saying that my childhood friend Jaine had passed away in the early hours of the morning. She had been battling with Motor Neurone for at least ten years and had only been expected to survive three years when she was first diagnosed. It has been inspirational to see how she coped with this dreadful disease and even when she lost her ability to talk and move she still remained incredibly cheerful. Last time I visited her (she lived in East Devon) I took my schooldays diaries which had lots of references to the mischief Jaine and I got up to in our early teens, and crazy photos of us when we thought we looked really 'cool' but actually didn't - She howled with laughter. It was such a lovely visit but very much tinged with huge sadness as I knew that would be the last time that I would see her. I can't tell you how much I admired her. She leaves three wonderful children and four grandchildren who will remember her with pride.
Life goes on.... The second lock down continues and the horses are working really well. Whether we will be allowed to point to point remains to be seen but everyone has their fingers crossed that the season will go ahead in one form or another. Even if it doesn't go it is a great distraction for me to have the horses to do each day, it helps to take my mind off this horrible situation. I noticed that all the trees at the bottom of our drive have been ear marked for felling. That woods is always full of birdsong and has a family of little owls which nest there every year. It is nowhere near the proposed line. The amount of devastation that is going to be caused to our wildlife cannot be understated. Very depressing.