One of the outside Auctioneers yesterday selling rolls of wire, old chicken coops, bags of logs and secondhand machinery ” Lot Number 277, A Bench Saw, guaranteed for one hour”, and it sold!

It was, as always a joy to wander around Melton Market.  As well as the buying and selling it is a local social gathering place, everyone seems to know everyone else and they gossip over pints of beer or cups of tea, in the aisles between the stalls and the selling barns and all is a cacophony of noise.

Above the chat and the squealing pigs, bleating sheep and lowing cows the Tannoy keeps all in order.  “Guinea Pig sale in 5 minutes”, or “Move your car Mr.—–, you are blocking the gates”.

Dogs and children mingle, seeming to know what they are doing and where they are going and rarely, if ever do you hear a message about lost children but then I expect just like when I was a child, in a small community everyone knows everyone else and look out for each other.

And I expect most children that live on a working farm have to learn early to be resilient. ‘What doesn’t kill you strengthens you’,  my Mum always used to say.

And as we trudged up the hill through the cattle trucks, lorries, land rovers and assorted battered 4 wheel drive vehicles all parked ‘hither and yon’, I stopped to watch a small boy, probably about my grandsons age , 10-ish.  Directing a huge Cattle Truck that was reversing out of a very tight space.  Mission accomplished he leapt for the passenger door handle and scrambled in and away they went.

Much more capable than me, I would have been overwhelmed by the small spaces and the sheer enormity of the vehicle and probably just cried!

Anyway I bought a bag full of old maps, Harmsworth’s dated 1907, and a bag of onions.   I was tempted by a pile of 1920/30’s Spanish magazines with the most wonderful stylised Deco covers but they were too much money for me to make anything out of them.  I did and am still rather lusting over them but sense prevails!

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