Amos was not happy. He hated phone calls of this nature, and he was ill at ease wondering what Seth wanted.
Amos was suspicious of Seth at the best of times: "Any man who spends as much time as he does in't Malt Shovel when he could drink good beer in't Woolpack... He needs watching."
The Malt Shovel was Seth's "local" at the time - although as 1980 wore on, he switched to The Woolpack, which didn't please Amos either.
"What were you phoning me about this morning, Seth Armstrong?" asked Amos. "Mr Wilks said it were important. You can have folks worrying leaving that sort of message."
"It's about your allotment," said Seth. "It's come through sooner than expected." Amos had applied for an allotment some months before. "There's been one disused for awhile up near't Ramseys'..."
"Well, what's that got to do with me?"
"It's yours now. I know how disappointed you were when you didn't get one a few months back. So, me as Chairman and't allotments committee have moved heaven and earth to get you this one."
"Anyway, Seth and Sam were waiting for me to back down - I could see it in their eyes."
And the Brearlys had their pride.
"You'll sort that out in less than five minutes, Amos," said Seth later that day in The Woolpack. "Anyway, digging runs in't family, don't it?"
"Eh?" Amos was puzzled.
"I hardly thinks that's the sort of comparison to go making in polite company," bristled Amos. "Anyway, techniques are quite different."
"How?" asked Seth.
"I've no intention of discussing that sort of thing over my bar!"
"Well, Amos, if you can't cope..." said Sam, impishly.
"Of course I can cope! Us Brearlys have always been noted for keeping a good garden - we've always had brown fingers!"
- So, fleet of foot and light of head, Amos made his way down to the allotments again to start work on transforming his patch the very next day.
Off with his duffle coat, out with his fork, dig in, and...
... immediate humiliation as the fork handle snapped in two. Of course, there were a couple of village worthies nearby to spread the news of Amos' glorious debut at the allotments all around Beckindale.
Of course, the physical toil took its toll on Amos and one afternoon Seth and Sam called on him and found him in a very undignified state...
... sleeping like a true allotment holder.
... a magnificent marrow - which he had planted but which had since grown with no help from him!