The only construction in town is the new Morrissons Supermarket and several Baptist churches and other churches of other denominations.
Mrs Monk got up this morning excited about the new opening of the Morrissons in Hadleigh. I was lured there, Moonie style, by the prospect of a cooked breakfast in their new restaurant.
"How about Breakfast at Morrissons?" said an extremely excited Mrs Monk.
She made it sound like "Breakfast at Tiffany's". This got me out of bed.
And there it was, the brand new grocery store gleaming in the sunrise, As we entered the temple of shopping, I was immediately gratified by the sight of the restaurant that shined with the promise of an almighty cooked breakfast.
But beyond the restaurant were other attractions and before I could say ham and eggs, Mrs Monk had disappeared into the labyrinth in search of salvation and stuff.
The new staff were nervous on their first day. One shop girl beamed with pride at their speciality selection of "exotic vegetables". Mrs Monk insisted on misquoting her and asked her whether the "erotic vegetables" did a pole dance in the aisles.
One hour later Mrs Monk decided we should go home where SHE would prepare the bacon and eggs and that this would be a special treat for me. We made our way back home laden with erotic veg and other bargains including a well fed £2 chicken who died smiling, according to the Morrisons bible.
The homeward journey involved a few other distractions including a trip to the bank and some photo snapping opportunities for Mrs Monk. The estuary was spectacularly heavenly on this sunny January day.
When we finally turned into the avenue Mrs Monk spotted a huddle of an immaculately turned out black family, which included a little girl in a tailored outfit and a big yellow flower behind one ear.
Mrs Monk cursed because she did not have her camera at hand as we passed. We parked up in front of the house on a yellow line having just passed a parking attendant writing a ticket.
"We'll get another ticket" said an anguished Mrs Monk.
"We are unloading," I said as I picked up the smiling chicken and the other groceries from the back of the car..
"We'll get another ticket" Mrs Monk repeated.
I came back for the last bag and Mrs Monk got herself into the driving seat, and drove off.
"Thanks for the breakfast," I said as she departed.
I went to the kitchen determined not to have the usual bowl of cereal.
I cut two slices of three-day-old flat bread. I cut it in a poncy way so it would look good on the plate. I would be the only one to see this. I then looked for the marmalade with no hope of finding any. I found none, but I did find an unopened jar of jam which I could not identify because it was labelled in French We had not been to France for a while so I looked for a date which I did find: 2005.
I then picked up a carton of eggs, which was in fact an empty carton, and then a second carton of eggs that was also 100% short of eggs.
At that point my toast was done and the door knocker had knocked.
At the door were two black ladies one of which was three feet tall with a yellow flower behind one ear.
"Hello" I said.
"Hello" said the five feet tall lady in her Sunday best on a Saturday. "What a wonderful day today?"
"Are you here to sell me something?" I said.
"No, not at all" she said without continuing, nor coming to the point.
"Are you here to sell me your church?" I said.
"NO!" she said.
With this the lady pushed the little girl forward, prompting her to begin a little speech, and indicating to me that the little one was engaged by her to convince me of something or other.
I lent down to listen to the little girl who was certainly a bit scared and not completely audible, but for the word "Jehovah" that finally emerged.
I looked up and then stood up to face the tall lady.
"What do you believe in?" she said to me, as if it were her business.
She actually threw me for a moment because I did not want to say I believed in nothing.
"I do believe in something", I found myself saying, "I believe in Breakfast"
With that we all smiled and they moved on to the next house.
Soon thereafter Mrs Monk called from her second supermarket of the day, Marks and Spencer, where she found more bargains.
Mrs Monk has the same problem choosing a church. One is never enough.