The mammoth Hilly Fields Summer Fayre arose like a deep sea creature at the end of last month. Through the morning I watched as people struggled off the 484 bus, trolleys loaded with boxes of all sorts of lovingly packed objects for their stall. The marquee companies arrived and did their thing at great speed and efficiency. And slowly the throng began to amass, the MC with their steady narrating, the queues to the food trucks multiplying through the afternoon.

And then the creature began dropping back into the depths having fed on our hunger for community, fun and a darned good bargain. During a de-brief the following week with Jen and Johanna, it surfaced that the perennial jerk chicken, rice and peas came in at sixteen pounds – most definitely a sign of these times.

Just a month before I had encountered a gentle foretaste of that behemoth in the form of Maisie and Zac, not far from the human water fountain/ever-present dog bowl near to the bowling green. What a wonderful pair of humans! Firm friends for two years, they’d already created a website together and for this late May school holiday set about making by hand FOUR different types of dog treats to further entrepreneur themselves into being. Knowing that I couldn’t just look the other way with an “oh, I don’t have a dog” attitude, I stopped and asked them questions about what they were up to and about themselves and their friendship.

The care and ingenuity of this pair was stunning and their steady enthusiasm infectious. They were happy to be caught on film (oops, I’ve just dated myself..) and yes, I contacted their mums to make sure they were okay with their digital images going out to our readership. Both mums attend the Sunflower Centre, which of course induced in me a warm fuzzy feeling.

Sometimes it’s the little unexpected moments and interactions that can be the most fun, the little appreciations the most nourishing. Thank you Zac and Maisie for your generosity and ingenuity.

So as well as my appreciation for them, I’d like to holler a huge WELL DONE! and express a huge thank you to each and every one of those volunteers who make the Fayre happen each year for the benefit of this wonderful community – You Are Awesome!!! Long may it continue.

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