The Only ‘Curate’ In The Village Gala

We had been moved in a few weeks when Neil received a phone call to ask him to open the rather impressive Village Gala (which has hosted 2000 people). I was absolutely delighted to hear that he would be arriving to the Gala riding on a lawn mower, decorated as Thomas the Tank Engine…excellent!

Yes, ok, ok… I shouldn’t have laughed! Unfortunately, laughing at your husband/curate comes before a fall. Neil happily informed me a few days later that not only does he have to arrive on the lawn mower, but they would really like it if we all did!

The lawn mower, that was disguised as Thomas the Tank engine, boasted two trailers. The first had a fancy canopy, in the style of a four-poster bed. The second trailer was a more modest affair, but was lined with deep pile carpet.  The organisers suggested that Neil and I, should sit on the thrones up front and the kids could ride together in the back.  I thought it might be good we mixed it up a bit, as the chances of arriving with an empty last carriage (knowing my kids) were fairly high. Top of Form

When the day arrived it was bucketing down with rain! We got to the starting point just about in time, rain-macs and wellies on! The train was ready and driver geared up. The boys and I borrowed coats to sit on, whilst Neil and Millie settled down in the rather luxurious dry first canopied and ‘enthroned’ trailer.

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For Ben (8), finding that Millie had been given a better seat than him was the final straw! Though we were just about to move off he decided that he was going to get out. I grab hold of him and pull him back, aware of an increased urgency on the drivers face… we needed to get going! Then a rather unpleasant fight ensued where Ben struggled to get free and I ended up physically holding him into the trailer.
The driver revved up, whipped out of the drive way and crashed into the gate. Well, to be fair, both the lawn-mower and Neil’s luxury carriage miss the gate entirely, it was only our carriage that crashed against the gate and promptly separated from the rest of the train. Unfortunately the driver was unaware of the whole episode and chugged on, leaving a lovely friend to grab our carriage and pull it at high speed to catch up!


Fortunately we made it, Neil opened the gala and I was given the most beautiful flower arrangement! I think that the next few years could be fun! 🙂