The pleasure of watering is to see the stream from the can absorbed by the dry soil, and to sense roots reaching for the moisture under the surface.
There is a regular spot in The Independent newspaper called Days like These, consisting of brief extracts from letters and diaries. Last week, on July 21 to be precise, it surprisingly described Thomas Macauley as "the French novelist". In today's paper is a letter from Bernard Sharp: "So was Voltaire a Welsh acrobat?" he asks.
A solitary swallow comes into view in the sky above the roofs for a split second. The evening sun catches the underside of its wing and shows it, golden brown, as it wheels and disappears.