I'm sure, dear reader, you are aware of Mrs. Lear's search for a new vocation and her herculean efforts at the Scottish Agricultural College at Auchencruive near Ayr.
Having magnificently come second in her first year to a horrible swot, she is approaching the end of the first term of her second year in fine shape - if a trifle over concerned by the assessments and course papers that she has to produce pretty much on a weekly basis.
This hasn't stopped her sleeping well, though, and perchance to dream.
You will probably also be aware we had some serious storms and winds over the last couple of weeks, so much so that the wooden fence between Castle Lear and our next door neighbour blew down. Mrs. L, eco-countryside warrior that she now is, cut the fence in half ( it's all that tree chopping down you know), and used it sideways to stop the dog escaping into the next garden.
This is a perfect solution until such time as the new fence bits arrive.
Of course, it does mean it's one more thing that her brain has mixed in with her course.
So it wasn't entirely a surprise when she informed me the other morning at breakfast that she was very upset that the garden had failed it's assessment.
As she hadn't drunk her coffee by that time, I put the remark down to mere un-wakefulness, as opposed to idiocy or Alzheimer's, but she went on.
" Yes, " she said, " It's too bad! They failed it because the fence had blown down and hasn't been replaced."
" Who failed it?"
" The Agricultural College"
" Do you mean they check up on your garden, to see if you are a fit and proper person?"
There was a slight pause as she sipped the coffee.
" Er I think I've got a bit confused. I must have dreamt it. They failed the entire class yesterday as none of us could understand the questions"
So that's all right then.
The Garden retains it's 100% pass rate.