Sunday, 6 June 2010


It has been a good weekend.

These days, being outside in the sunshine, working hard and tiring myself out, is probably my greatest source of pleasure. Digging over the veg beds, pulling weeds, sowing and planting. Heck, even mowing that darned grass. It is all good. Getting hot and sweaty, scratched by brambles, stung by nettles - none of that matters. I can lose myself in the sheer physicality of it all.

This weekend I had a lot to do.
On Tuesday I am flying to Berlin for a few days with R's Dad, brother and sister-in-law. I have been so looking forward to the trip. (There's that 'forward' word again!). I haven't seen R's Dad since before Christmas and he is not very good on the telephone, so it will be a real pleasure to spend some time with him. It will also give me a boost to set down my scruffy gardening gear and put on my respectable clothes for a few days, and get a quick city fix.

I love travelling, and always have. It has been a little strange planning this trip with R's family, though, as their idea of what constitutes holiday preparations is very different to my own. They normally go on package-type holidays, where they know exactly where they are going and where they will be staying, whereas R and I would simply buy a plane or ferry ticket and worry about accommodation when we arrived in the country. I think this makes a trip more interesting, but you do have to be prepared to spend the odd night sleeping in the car when things don't work out. Given that R's Dad is in his early 80s, I relented on this occasion and booked us a nice hotel!

Even though the trip is only for a few days, I still felt that I needed to get all the seedlings out of the greenhouse and into the ground before I went. And cut the grass, clean out the hen houses and generally tidy up. It did strike me as a little daft that the garden would be looking great while I wasn't there to see it, but I know that coming back home to a mess will be too depressing for words.

What I hadn't bargained for was just how much there was to do. So now I am totally pooped and haven't managed to do any ironing or packing. The spirit is willing, but these tired muscles just aren't cooperating. Doubtless I shall be running around at midnight tomorrow trying to pack and remember everything I want to take - but that is sort of traditional around here.

And at least the garden looks good!


  1. The garden looks great! I love how you say that you are lying to Berlin for a few days -- to an Aussie that sounds so exotic! -- it takes us ages to fly anywhere.

  2. It was a very selective picture - most of it doesn't look that good!
    It does sound quite glamorous, doesn't it? But it is about 1000 km door to door, and will take me less time than it would take to drive to Edinburgh. I guess that is one of the good things about living on (or just off) a crowded continent.

  3. It is nice you are still connected with R's family and I am glad you are experiencing the good fatigue of hard, honest work. How wonderful to be traveling to Berlin!

  4. It sounds quite exotic to me too! I love how your garden looks, and the lovely lambs. As I probably mentioned quite a long while ago, I used to keep about 30 milk goats and the barn was always full to bursting with goat kids each spring. There were also a few Angora goats and a couple of wool sheep too. It seemed like such a fun time of the year as many days there would be more new arrivals. It's been about seven years since the last of the goats left (we had a herd for about 25 years). I miss that a bit now, and your photos make me a little envious!
    I hope you had a great trip and arrive home to find your plants all doing well. It's such a wonderful time of the year to be out in the country, isn't it?

  5. @WitM: Yes, I have always got on well with R's family - I consider them as much my folks as his. And it was great to spend some time with them in a relaxed situation.

    @Bev: I can't imagine handling 30 goatlings at once - sounds like a recipe for total chaos! But fun at the same time.
    Berlin was great - better even than I was expecting, and all the plants were fine when I got back as it had mostly rained while I was away. Shame the grass didn't stop growing for a few days though!