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Apr. 10th, 2017

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My son and daughter-in-law live just across the road ( a very narrow unmade road) from this medium sized London Park. Yesterday was the hottest day of the year- thus far- and people were out in strength, walking dogs, sitting in the shade, playing cricket...
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It has just dawned on me that molehills (of which we have a never-ending supply) are an excellent source of friable, aerated soil for use in plant pots. No need for heavy, back-breaking spadework- you just crouch down and scoop the earth up with your hands.

This morning I have potted up a curry tree, a couple of red-stemmed plants whose names I don't know and a clump of lavender.
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My daughter-in-law just got back from a trip to Kathmandu; it was a business trip but with time allowed for her and her colleagues to go lose money in the casino and visit the celebrated burning ghat- where people sit around and eat lunch or have their pictures taken with jolly sadhus or are otherwise convivial while their deceased relatives go up in smoke.

There are pictures of the place on line. It's pokier than I imagined- with buildings crowding in on the platform where the pyres burn within ash-shovelling distance of a dark, turbid and in the dry season all but non-existent river. There's a very holy temple and also a sort of hospice area where moribund people go to watch the proceedings and wait their turn. No everyone approves- and I understand there are moves afoot locally to close the place down on grounds of health and safety. If they succeed it'll be goodbye to one of Nepal's biggest tourist attractions.

Contrary to what you might expect- says Su- the place smells lovely- presumably from the quantities of spice and incense being burned and slung around.

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