During lockdown, the bicycle and Thule chariot were in frequent use. But for this adventure, I needed the livestock trailer and although I’ve improved my cycling fitness, I am not in the iron lady category. As Radio 2 hit speakers, I heard the road traffic report. Incidentally, they were all down south. So as I came across a hold up on the A95 into Aviemore I was tempted to ring them up. Yep, there were a small herd of cattle frolicking along, enjoying the gorse bushes while traffic come to a complete halt in both directions. On my left was … Continue reading On the road again.
Our newly planted fields has been getting visitors. Four legged bandits looting the place under the cover of darkness. Picking on young, self defenceless seedlings. They are not part of any union to represent them, can’t afford a lawyer, so they are under stress. Not only that, word has been spreading among the pigeon population and gangs have been congregating in the area during the evenings. Now, I’m not about to invest both money and hard labour into a field for the benefit of our small herd and lose it to pigeons and deer. But they know what they are … Continue reading Eagle and pidgeons
But there was no plan. Just a simple ‘nip down to the shed and get back up to sort tea’ type of plan. And just to get the dog doing as much with me as possible, I’ll let him run down without the lead (Gus, a patterdale terrier if that gives anyone an idea of the story about to unfold). Got to the shed in time to be greeted by the entire herd at the nearest gate. They had seen me coming and they were bawling. Not soft, gentle moos. They were making their presence know and demanding action. As … Continue reading When a plan comes together.
Maybe it would have been better if I had just done the original saying and just grinned and beared it. But back at the start of the year, one of my goals was to make my own gin (by infusion with a neutral spirit I hasten to add before I have HMRC tapping at my door wondering why I don’t have the proper license; I’m not bootlegging it before anyone asks). The moon may shine but this is no moonshine. It’s just a chance to experiment with what is used to make gin, to see what flavours come through, what … Continue reading Just gin and share it.
So the far side was recently ploughed. The far side (not the comic), is also referred to as the rough field. The hint is in the name. But what’s in a name? For it is less so now. OK, it’s not a lush green meadow with oddles of new grass, wild flowers and pretty butterflies dancing in the sunlight. But, it was a field of thick, deep rushes; old, open drains, buried fences, and a rough, and muddy road going through it. Initially, the flail mower was taken to it. And repeated repeatedly as the reeds lost their strength and … Continue reading A stone’s throw away.
‘Honey, honey…’ ahh, ABBA. They have quite a few songs adaptable to the crofting lifestyle. But this one cuts the mustard for Dryope (she is a cow before you ask and no we didn’t name her). Just need to change the lyrics from ‘love’ to ‘milk’ and it fits the bill. The dizzy thing in the song? Aye, have that too, thats’s just from standing back up again after trying to get the machine on her. And not only that, bending down low next to a cow takes a wee bit of courage, particularly if they show signs of wanting … Continue reading You’re a milk machine…
I’ve got the 7” shingles, the wrong lying outcome The 12 pile broken mix Just put them in the wheelbarrow, grab yourself a mallet See what we can smash up I want some slate scree and revamp, a dodgy little section With a merry wee wish and bang From slates for the roof to chippings galore But still, the whole ones left over for sure. Swing a mean machine Want rid of the moss We were bent down, hands down, little bit of sit down Giving it a good wallop across All the punters will say And you’d be join … Continue reading The 7” Shingles by The Unusable North
If Petula Clark had sung during the coronavrus… When you’re alone and life is making you lonely, You can always go downstairs. When your fridge is a teaser, all the food in the freezer Seems to help, I know, downstairs Just listen to the WhatsApp of the friends in other cities Linger on the iMac where the zoom call chats are witty When can you booze? The lights are much brighter there You can forget all your troubles, forget all your cares, So go downstairs Things will be great when you’re downstairs No finer sofa for sure, downstairs… She obviously … Continue reading Downtown…
The Crofter is home again. He got back having only been gone for five weeks. As he checked the orchard and polytunnel I was able to confirm: I had not needed the knacker man, no plants had died in his absence (to my knowledge), we had had no hospital admittance, no vet call outs and no calves. Not bad going, if I do say so myself. Ok, I had had to get assistance with the plumbing, a pig had gone on the run, I had brushcut a field, we got the full paramedic experience, and oh, I had had a … Continue reading As you like it.
Meet the three wee pigs. Who, after their arrival (ie, one day to collect, three days distracted with plumbing) decided to put on a show in line with Gilbert and Sullivan’s Penzance production. Scene one, act one began as they were given access to explore their new surroundings. The electric fence was soon tested but they showed their savviness. I breathed out a sign of relief, and with that, a sudden sprint ensued, a synchronised limbo dance move and all three went straight under the bottom wire and off they trotted. Yes, off they frolic in their new sense of … Continue reading The Pirates of Per Chance.