And the rain came down

Yep, it’s wet. I got soaked to the skin taking some feed three hundred yards to a bunch of bullocks. The water is running down our drive like a river, and all in all, it’s the start of the Cumbrian Summer Monsoon.


It’s been wet for the last few days, on and off, but what struck me has been how dusty the ground is, just half an inch down.

But anyway, we’ve had a decent summer, it’s still warm, grass is still growing and that is what matters.

It’s funny, in spite of all my best intentions I’ve got dragged into discussions on the web about Israel and Gaza and all that sort of stuff.

I hadn’t intended to, I firmly resolved to keep out of it. But you know what it’s like, there’s only so much asinine stupidity a chap can put up with without coming over all ironic.

I suspect it’s the level we’ve degenerated to. It’s no longer necessary to actually know anything about the subject any more. All that matters is that you have an ‘opinion’ and you’re ‘sincere’ and that means you’re right.


Which brings me on to the other day; I dropped round to see friends. For environmental reasons Natural England want cattle grazing some of the fells. Fair enough, they’re willing to cover the cost because it isn’t really an economic activity. But because the fell has roads across it they want the cattle to have collars with fluorescent bands on them so that drivers, who might otherwise miss seeing half a ton of somnambulant bovine, might at least catch the flash of light as the occasional ray of Cumbrian sunshine falls on the collar.

So he was putting the collars on. This isn’t quite as easy as you’d think. You’ve got to get the animal into the crush where its head is ‘sort of held’ and then you put the collar on. So I ended up putting the collar on as he put them in the crush, which made the job go faster.

And it was good to be back doing something I’m good at. Just burble away cheerfully to them, in a voice that lets them know that you’re not worried so why should they be upset. Then as they stand there you carefully learn over them and gently put the open collar under their throat and charily fasten it. All the while being ready to drop everything and get out of the way if your honeyed words don’t keep them pacified.

It went well. One memorable moment was when I was dealing with a limi heifer, to whom the technical term ‘radged’ might be applied. I got the collar on and opened the crush gate. She hurtled out of it, crossed the yard, still accelerating and shot out of the gate, only to stop abruptly when faced with over six thousand acres of fell.

After all what’s the point in running madly, crashing through fences and making your break for freedom if the nearest fence is a bus ride away?

So outfaced by reality she stopped, stared at it and then wandered quietly off to join her mates.

Funny how many people cannot cope with the reality, when faced with it they just ignore it and wander of and stand with their mates, telling each other what nice people they are because they’re ‘sincere’ which means they have to be right.

Me, I suspect I’d probably just stick to doing what I do best, apparently this involves sticking collars on bullocks so sensible people can avoid them.

But doing what you do best can be fun.



Alternatively if you don’t fancy too much reality, try a little fantasy instead!


As one reviewer commented, “A great read with believable characters and an interesting storyline, a Historical Fiction type ‘Whodunit’.
I look forward to reading more such books by this author.”

There again, another said, “Brilliant book, could not put it down. Will certainly look for more from this author,.”

13 thoughts on “And the rain came down

  1. The Story Reading Ape August 1, 2014 at 10:41 am Reply

    I’m afraid that opinions are like a**holes Jim – everyone has one, that’s mine anyway! LOL 😀

    • jwebster2 August 1, 2014 at 11:06 am Reply

      I don’t mind the fact they’ve all got one, it’s the fact they’re all so ’emotional’ and ‘sincere’ that gets me

      People forget that some things are kept discretely covered up for a reason 🙂

  2. M T McGuire August 1, 2014 at 5:45 pm Reply

    I think there are areas of the world where emotions are worn on the sleeve and the people believe what they’re told. In many places the national anthem is played at the beginning of school and the kids all pledge allegiance to their nation. There’s an element of brainwashing in it which I don’t like and it does tend to mean that people believe what they’re told is right without thinking about it. Take history. In Britain we’re taught x happened and the reason may be y, z or a, we’re not sure. Decide for yourself which you think it was and put a case to prove your reasoning. In many parts of the world kids are taught that x happened and the reason was y. It leaves them incapable of having a debate. They just shout their own particular view more and more loudly, and worded slightly differently, until the other person gives up or backs down. They can’t even see the difference to having been indoctrinated and having an opinion.

    All very sad.



    • jwebster2 August 1, 2014 at 10:29 pm Reply

      It is sad. I always find it interesting when you start talking to people and they suddenly realise that you are genuinely exploring options and are not coming at it with a closed mind.
      The thread about Gaza I took part in, I think I confused some participants because I pointed out that whilst it cab be a war crime to shell civilians, it can also be a war crime to set up weapons emplacements in civilian areas without evacuating the civilians first.
      So people had just nicely pigeon holed me as a zionist, when I then pointed out to someone who was saying how Israel has always stood against terrorism, that actually one person the Israeli government had appointed as ambassador to the UK wasn’t allowed to take up his post as he was still under sentence of death from a British court, for terrorism 🙂

      • M T McGuire August 1, 2014 at 10:58 pm

        Wow. I never knew that. I’m not surprised though.

      • jwebster2 August 2, 2014 at 6:49 am

        Not just ambassadors, Prime Minister Menachem Begin was when he was younger the head of the Irgun, he is the man who organised the King David Hotel bombing. The British government put a price on his head.

      • M T McGuire August 2, 2014 at 5:10 pm

        Bloody hell, I never knew that either.

      • jwebster2 August 2, 2014 at 5:19 pm

        Standard British method of dealing with terrorists. Eventually talk to them, let money pour into their back pockets, let them settle down and be respectable.
        Then point out we know where you live, we know the schools your children go to, and funnily enough, so do the terrorist hold-outs who didn’t join in the talks. And guess what, they now hate you as traitors even more than they hate us. It’s surprising how often it works. He says, carefully not mentioning our neighbours to the west

  3. willmacmillanjones August 4, 2014 at 7:12 pm Reply

    It’s no wonder the dastardly Frenchies coined the term ‘Perfidious Albion’, is it?

    • jwebster2 August 4, 2014 at 7:41 pm Reply

      Just because we are better at it than they are 🙂

  4. Keir Arts August 6, 2014 at 5:07 pm Reply

    I generally use the expression “I wouldn’t touch that with yours” when it comes to Israel/Gaza. I think your argument is right however, knock both sides heads together and get them to sort it out.

    • jwebster2 August 6, 2014 at 5:50 pm Reply

      The old idea of locking the cardinals up on a diet of bread and water if they hadn’t elected a pope by a certain date has a lot to recommend it.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: