The cross that Bruno made

Bruno's cross

For many days the days have been filled with the distant and monotonous tap of Bruno’s hammer. I take it as the reassuring sound of a man at work but my neighbour finds it very disturbing and calls me to complain.

‘Have you heard the hammering?’ he asks.

‘Yes’ I reply, ‘it is my neighbour Bruno. He’s mending his shed and repairing the shared fence that is falling down. I am very grateful to him. I have apologised to him for my laziness but he says “no, no, I like the work” and so we are both happy.’

Bruno is Italian, retired and suffers from continual pain which he finds easier to deal with when he is working; and he has a voracious appetite for work. Interestingly it was he who pointed out that Chelsea’s European Cup victory was built on the Italian style: defence and lightning strike.

My neighbour, who does not work, is disappointed by my lack of support and I think surprised that I am not more offended by this disturbance of a sunny summer afternoon. ‘I’d like to go out into the garden and enjoy this lovely weather but I can’t’ he says.

‘Ah well!’ I’m not so sympathetic. I feel the same way about summer parties next door. There is nothing more lovely than a good summer party where the volume of chatter rises and rises until it is drowned by the sound of a heavy beat that thumps the skin of a warm summer night. How can one begrudge one’s fellow men and women a good night’s raving.

Think of it like this, the conversation is the sound of the surf and the thud of the drums, the rollers pounding the southern shore. Now embrace the sound and let it rock you to sleep. Or maybe grab a bottle of wine and go next door and join in.

Anyway Bruno is still banging away but not today. Is it because of the rain or the Queen’s jubilee? I don’t know. But sitting here in the shed I observe his handiwork and I declare it excellent. Its given the bottom of the garden a slight shanty town look through the use of a multitude of different pieces of scrap timber. The fence is standing, Bruno has enjoyed himself, and today my neighbour can enjoy the silence.

Its a shame about the rain but that is a cross (like the one that Bruno made) that we all must bear. Sent from my BlackBerry® wireless device

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