The Archers – February 2011

Ambridge is not so much doom and gloom anymore, but there is tension all around and little to be joyous about. Except that Camilla visit, which was so hyped up and generally not very interesting. The Lynda business was a bit silly, and bless Ian for not going on and on about HRH.

At Lower Loxley, it’s still tough. David keeps trying to escape but ends up doing more and more, including a trip up to Scotland to deliver a bull personally. It’s no wonder Ruth has finally lost her temper. I can’t believe she didn’t do it before. It took losing two milkings worth of product before she finally exploded at him properly. Even so, it doesn’t seem like there is a light at the end of the tunnel. David was almost convinced but then a quick chat with Jill, saying that poor Elizabeth with her poor heart would just take it all on herself, and he was right back to shouldering the burden himself.

The good news is that things are ticking along nicely with the business though. That blasted wedding went without a hitch, and Roy came over to cover Elizabeth for some kind of conference. Even the kids are successfully getting through their exams without meltdowns, although Freddie is not as confident as Lily.

Back at Brookfield, Pip took her driving test and passed, and was given a car for her birthday. At least we won’t need to hear about her missing the bus anymore. She can drive around to her heart’s content. Good ol’ Uncle Kenton got the car, and I can say that if I needed someone to wheedle a car salesman down to a good price, Kenton would be the one I’d turn to.

Talking of that, Jolene has been turning to Kenton more and more, and whilst he was sure they were just being friends, Kirsty has noticed how much time they’ve spent together. Of course, as soon as she made Kenton aware, he ran away in the opposite direction, leaving Jolene more confused than ever. Great timing for a bit of emotional upheaval as well, as she’s in two minds about selling the Bull again. Matt whispered some sweet nothings (or numbers) in her ear and she was more tempted than ever. When Lilian found out, she was pretty annoyed but mostly because she doesn’t want to be the one to close perhaps the only social gathering place left in the village.

I can’t imagine that The Bull will close, even if Jolene does sell up. There would be nowhere else for people to bump into each other.

A few other bits and pieces have been building up. Emma is even more jealous of Nic’s relationship with Clarrie. She tried to get Clarrie to go shopping with her, but it took almost an entire month before Clarrie could spare the time. Plus, it was SuperNic’s idea to celebrate Eddie’s birthday with a trip to the races, an event that everyone assumed Emma and Ed would be invited to but no one actually remembered to invite them. I can sort of see where Emma is coming from on that occasion, but if you want to have good relationships with your inlaws, you have to make the effort. At one point she said she felt like she was just the person that delivered George to their door, and you can only assume that’s because that is all she does.

Perhaps when she has the second grandchild things will be different. I suspect she is hoping so. It seems odd that Emma is still pregnant, when Helen has been a doting mother for two months now. Doting is exactly what she is, and it’s getting on my nerves more than ever. She’s completely different. A messy flat, she doesn’t mind her dad taking Henry to the pub, and she basically said Kirsty could do what she wanted. Before, she would go on and on about a new lettuce supplier but now, Kirsty tried to mention it and all she got was replies about bathtimes and moses baskets. What is a moses basket anyway?

Finally, where would be without Kate to stir up a bit of trouble? This time she wants to take Phoebe to South Africa over Easter, keeping her out of school for extra hours. Naturally, she told Phoebe she could go without discussing it with Roy and Hayley first, because why should they have any say? They seem to have overcome the problem of keeping Phoebe out of school now, by making the poor girl travel on at least one flight by herself.

Now she is terrified. And quite rightly too. I’m terrified to fly, wouldn’t want to do it by myself, and I am a grown up (supposedly). I do feel sorry for Phoebe, and I can’t help but wonder what she is going to be like when she’s older. What a confusing childhood she is having. Of course, the question is, who would you rather have as a mother? Terrible Kate or scary Helen?