Community Spirit – Episode 52

ON Tuesday night, the WI ladies held their meeting and the Mucklebury Arms was abuzz. After Pamela had dealt with their business for the night, and everyone had a drink in their hand, Nate and Jeannie stole a few moments over by the bar.

Nate thought Jeannie looked very pretty in a pink top and cropped white trousers.

The evenings were starting to draw in and she had a shawl on top of the handbag on the bar stool next to her for the short walk home.

Jeannie couldn’t keep still and as soon as the last lady had taken her drink she leaned over the bar.

“I’ve been offered a job!”

Nate’s eyes opened in surprise.

“I didn’t know you’d been for any interviews,” he said.

“I haven’t!” Jeannie replied, clearly excited. “It was someone at the fête who bought one of my pies, and yesterday they tracked me down through Pamela and phoned me to offer me a job!”

“That’s fantastic!” Nate grinned. “Where is it?”

“At a bakery in town. They distribute all around the area and want me to make a range of pies for them along the lines of those I did at the fête. I get to devise the recipes, the design, everything!”

“Congratulations.” He reached over the bar and squeezed her arm.

“Thank you.”

“Why are we whispering?” Nate asked.

Jeannie giggled and looked around the pub, but no-one seemed to be paying them any attention.

“I don’t know,” she said in a low voice. “I haven’t made up my mind. It’s a fantastic opportunity but there are a few compromises involved.”

“Like what?”

“Long hours with early starts and some weekend working. I won’t be there for Tasha in the mornings. But I’ll be back by the time she gets home from school, which is a good thing.”

“I’m sure Tasha will soon get used to sorting herself out in the mornings. I can ask Cally to knock for her if that would help?”

“I’m sure she’ll be OK after a few days,” Jeannie said, looking worried. Then she brightened. “Anyway, it’s not like I have a choice, is it?

“We need the money and this is the only thing I’ve been offered. There is one huge bonus, though.”

“What’s that?”

“I can resign from the Goose.” She went back to whispering. “That will make Fergus and Debbie happy, and it will certainly make me happy.”

“What will make me happy?” Debbie asked, appearing at Jeannie’s elbow.

Alison Cook