I am afraid I am a tidy person. You see - in the first sentence I have to make a veiled apology for being tidy. I like a place for everything and everything in its place and however hard I try to be otherwise I find that if things begin to get untidy I have to tidy up. That doesn't mean I can always find things because sometimes I put things away in places I forget about. But it does mean they are not on show.
I have some friends who are untidy; whose houses are a jumble, the sink full of washing up still to be done, a pile of ironing on the sideboard, a clutter of things around. These seem to me to be the happiest of my friends and sometimes I wish I could be like them.
Others strike the happy medium where some things are put away but others are left out; where the book finished the week before last is still on the side table and has not been put on the bookshelf. This is the personality I envy the most.
This same feeling spills over into the garden. I would love to have a really wild garden and I do try to let things seed themselves. In fact my age has been a help here to some extent because there are a lot of jobs in the garden that I can no longer do and have to be left to the farmer. He is a good, straight-forward chap in the garden but doesn't do the fancy stuff.
People throw rubbish out of their cars as they drive down the lane and I am always taking a carrier bag with me on my afternoon walk so that I can pick up beer bottles, pepsi bottles, crisp packets and the like. This is the rubbish that no-one in their right mind likes.
But what about village greens and village churchyards? When I was a child I don't think our churchyard was mown. Everyone kept their grave tidy and well cared-for - my aunt used to come down every Sunday to tend the graves of her grandparents - cutting the grass, changing the flowers. But the periphery of the churchyard was left to grow its snowdrops, its daffodils, its cow parsley - all in their season.
Our village green is cut every week or so by a contractor in the Summer and I must say it looks very smart. I don't really think I would like it any other way. But what about the roadside verges? Our lane is a froth of cowparsley a bit later in the year and in a few weeks time it will be golden with dandelions. For about a week it will be 'gasp' beautiful
And what about untidy farms. The farmer is a tidy farmer and our yard is always neat. But I could name farms where the view of the farm yard is disgusting - old silage bags, old wooden pallets, heaps of manure, mud all over.
Does tidiness matter or is it just me with my tidy mind wanting to have everything up to scratch?