For three hundred years our cottage stood in isolation, until fifty years ago it was surrounded by fields. About twenty years ago Reading started to knock at its door. when we moved in we were shaded from a housing estate (a lovely one, but just still full of houses) by a small road and high trees. From my bedroom window I could still look down at towards the River Loddon and see country.
When I came back from my walk today I saw traffic cones, and it just seemed to herald the end of solitude. the road that used to lead only to our home is being widened and a round about is being put in so that it can take the traffic for hundreds of new homes. New homes that will be rammed in cheek by jowell between me and the wonderful river.
I will never wake up and watch silently as the wisps of morning mist disappear across the fields, before any noise was ours (sorry for anyone who heard us play Elvis at 3am while we stood on surf boards in the garden pretending to be scared of sharks) now we will just be one more house in endless suburbia.