Radio Times: Mike branches out.Characters: Jennifer, Mike, Nigel, Pat, Tony
- Tony is cutting cabbages in the rain and bemoaning the fact that he is getting too old for this kind of thing on a Sunday. Pat offers to help trimming the leeks which are coming on thick and fast and says how busy her week is going to be with an increased order from Underwood’s and Clarrie being off on Tuesday when Ed will be in court – victims of their own success is Pat’s estimate but she doesn’t appreciate Tony’s expression of occasional longing for failure. They discuss Tom and Helen’s movements for the day and Tony tries to reassure Pat that Gregg is a ‘sound bloke’ despite the current problems with the relationship, and that he and Helen will ‘sort themselves out’.
- Mike meets Nigel in the banqueting hall at Lower Loxley (although Nigel forgot to put the clocks back and had expected Mike an hour earlier…….) and they admire Hayley’s decorations for the Halloween Party. They reminisce about when Brenda was young at Halloween. Mike quizzes Nigel about the job which Oliver Stirling had mentioned to him last week and Nigel indicates that the path clearing to be done on the Nature trail needs to be completed by early spring. Mike assures him that his milk round has suffered at the hands of Supermarket loss-leaders and he will be able to give priority time to this job. They decide to look at the job after coffee.
- Jenny tells Pat she is taking Alice up to Lower Loxley to see the birds of prey – Pat would love to go but has too much on today. Tony takes a request from George about being on the flood alert telephone tree rather pessimistically but doesn’t actually refuse. Pat asks about Lilian’s progress and Jenny informs them that Lilian will be going back to Jersey a week tomorrow – she’ll miss her good company but Brian is being as nice as pie to her now the end of her stay is in sight! Tony goes back to the poly-tunnel.
- Pat and Jenny discuss Helen’s cheese-making project then her relationship with Gregg. Pat again expresses her worries – an older man, a messy first marriage, children, split priorities, Helen’s elation one moment and despair the next – and Jenny compares the situation to her earlier life and marriage, and her feelings about Kate’s love antics a few years ago. She says that Pat is over-reacting, that Helen has found new love and is, at 22, an adult who must live, and be allowed to live her own life.
- Nigel outlines the job to Mike – saving the young trees, shifting all the dead stuff (great for the bonfire!), signs to paint, preparing steps, etc. He gives Mike the job. Jenny appears and Mike tells her that according to Brenda, Scott is going to be on TV on Thursday.
- In the Bull, Pat and Tony reward themselves with a well-earned drink, joining with Mike to celebrate his job. He’s going to buy himself a new chain saw at last. They enjoy the sight of Sid’s new waistcoat – is lime green still in fashion? – and anticipate Jolene being in charge on her own when Sid goes to London midweek for the licensed victualler’s dinner. While chewing over current implications of Ed’s impending court appearance they remember the nightmare of when Tom was in a similar situation, and think sympathetically of the Grundy family as a whole.