Proper rain came at last yesterday, just after mum and I returned from walking the pooch. Since then we’ve had gallons of the chilly wet stuff, much needed by the garden, but a little dreary for the humans. Alas, it put an end to my excuses for not getting on with indoor jobs. Yesterday therefore veered from the sublime to the tedious.
Mum and I took Lyra round the Hirsel extended cow circular in the morning. As we went in we, yet again, heard the mystery bird that sounds like a pig/dog. I am sure Raymond thinks we have made this up but it most definitely exists! Lots of other birds were tweetling away in the hedge and the little yellow headed fellow kept us company for a while. As we wandered round admiring the calves we met a mother with two young children. We exchanged greetings and Lyra was duly petted. Our paths crossed again a little later when the mother rushed over to tell us we had just missed the pelican flying past. We were agog until, a little later, mum wondered if perhaps it might have been the heron that shares the muddy pond with the cows. But then again, could a pelican do a convincing pig/dog impersonation??. We are not rushing to judgement. It was a lovely walk. The bluebells are now well up and taking over from the daffodils. In the little woods there are still vast carpets of anemone and a good show of primroses, with quite a few patches of cowslips (or possibly oxlips – I’m wholly on the difference). In the damp and shady path to the first bridge we spotted a little dark blue flower in amongst some Herb Robert which kept us speculating all the way home. George Oogle came up trumps as ever – it was ground ivy (Glechoma hederacea) also known as creeping charlie, alehoof, tunhoof, catsfoot, field balm, and (my personal favourite) run-away-robin. Despite the moniker it is a member of the mint family.
After our morning perambulation the rain set in thoroughly and, housebound, I used up all the leftover icing from Ishbel’s birthday cake making a vast quantity of fondant fancies – perhaps they would be better described as fondant frenzies. There is an air of Alice in Wonderland about them I think. This experiment has, however, advanced the frontiers of science. I read somewhere that people reject blue food as it is “not natural”. This was put firmly to the test by the cake experiment. From my, obviously highly statistically significant, sample of 12, I observed that the blue ones went down no less quickly than the others. Perhaps we have evolved into greater blue food tolerance since the original study. I have preserved 3, one of each flavour (lemon and raspberry, orange and walnut and banana and ginger) for Ishbel to try but the others are now long gone.
After that Mum tackled the ironing and I hit the paperwork and steadily worked through one box and three bags, sorting as I went. Various oddities emerged as I sorted – 3 circular knitting needles and a sheet of school photos of me when I must have been maybe 10 or 11. All in all it was satisfying in a rather perverse way to restore order but not, I think, the stuff of amusing anecdote…..
Today mum and I motored over to see Dad in hospital, where he was on rather fine form and we had a good laugh remembering the disastrous family holiday in the highlands when we got back from a freezing trip up a mountain to find the caravan, parked in a scenic loch side campsite, floating gently in a now much larger loch. (Actually there were many such tales and that is why I will never ever go camping again). Keith went into Edinburgh to finish off some landscaping on a friend’s garden and has yet to make it back. I am expecting a bedraggled item, possibly with trench foot, to come dripping in at any moment. (I popped in on George and Judy to drop off their mad cake samples to find them just back from Edinburgh where they reported torrents). Lachlan has been sent to the Coop for beer and pork scratchings and I have laid the fires. Indeed the man is positively mollycoddled….