Yesterday was rescheduled. I got out of bed intending to do various things and pretty well none of them happened. First I was looking sheep and in checking one lot I discovered we had a problem with a fence.
That bit of hedge isn’t particularly good. We’re still trying to cope with a policy decision made by a previous owner, but there again it’s not entirely his fault. He’d just got back from the First World War and his mind was probably not entirely on the job in hand.
Needless to say where the hedge isn’t (because of the aforementioned policy decision) we have a gate which covers the gap. Now the gate is no longer young. I can empathise with that. It’s seen better days and frankly isn’t perhaps the gate it was in its youth.
Still steps have been taken. So the bars that had rusted through were screened from the mocking gaze of a cruel world by a piece of elegantly rusticated corrugated iron, held in place by an almost equally elderly fence post.
I found the sheet of corrugated iron twenty yards into the field with the broken off remnants of the fence post still attached. Yes it was a trifle draughty the previous evening.
Anyway none of the lambs had escaped and I propped the sheet up as a temporary measure, intending to return later. I continued to see the next bunch of sheep only to discover that two hawthorn trees had been blown down across the lane. Now that’s not as dramatic as it sounds, they weren’t big trees and the wind had blown them almost parallel to the hedge so the lane wasn’t entirely blocked. Anyway it was at a junction so you could go round.
At this point I metaphorically tore up whatever passed as a schedule for my day, and returned to the scene of silvicultural devastation. This time I was accompanied not by an enthusiastic Border Collie; but with a chainsaw, quad bike, trailer and sundry assorted billhooks and similar. I cut the two hawthorn trees up into fireplace sized lumps, lopping any useful thorns off for filling gaps. I was distinctly chuffed because I even managed to save one of the trees. It was still held by one root, so I left it with a foot of stump laid in the base of the hedge to grow back up from.
Then it was off to fix more permanently the sheet to the gate, and that job done, to stack the wood on next year’s woodpile.
Anyway I would have ended my rather trite rural tale here, except for the fact that during the course of today I learned a very useful tip. Everybody seems to want to get their weight down, and there are all sorts of diets which cost you an absolute fortune in avocado and gingered lemon-grass sorbet or whatever. Well today I learned the secret of real weight loss.
After moving some lambs this afternoon, on the way home I came across a chap I’ve known for a lot of years. He was ruefully confessing that the doctor had insisted on him losing eight stone before August then he could have a major heart operation.
Well he could do with losing it, but thinking back I remember him being over-heavy years ago, but he’d lost a lot of weight back then, even if he’d slowly put it back on. Now it was about the time he married, so half in jest I suggested he get married again.
“No, it wasn’t that,” he replied. “It was before that when I was doing up the house. I was living in a caravan for ten months eating nothing but cold baked beans out of the tin. The weight fell off me. Mind you, you wouldn’t want to be in an enclosed space with me and my arse was sore.”
Anyway to go with the new, slim and elegant you, how about a bit of slim and elegant reading matter. I’d recommend ‘A Bad Penny.’
No good deed goes unpunished. When Benor saves a man’s life he finds himself the target of assassins. Poetry, politics and the quarrels of academics make a lethal cocktail.
Yours for a mere £0.98, go on, treat yourself, because you’re worth it.