So it's the dénouement of the summer holidays. We've ground to a halt after weeks of doing things, seeing friends and going places. H9 and R7 are looking forward to going back to school on Monday. I think they miss the routine, the tick tock of the weeks. I'm not sure we have done everything we planned so a bit of mopping up of things - our aborted trip to Folly Farm is one - must happen between now and
Christmas the end of the year.
The haylage has been made. It was mown on Tuesday (by a neighbour with his mower-conditioner so it doesn't need turning or rowing up.) Yesterday afternoon it was baled - 22 big round bales in total, nine in one field, 13 from the other. Last night as the sun set H9, R7 and I took the dogs up to see (I forgot my camera). The sky was a hazy lilac, with the pink of sunset on the horizon. When we got to the field about 200 crows were sitting on the electricity wires chatting amongst themselves. As we approached they flew off cawing chased by the ever hopeful but invariably futile dogs.
This morning Brian brought the haylage bales down one by one then our neighbour came back and wrapped them. As a small farm with just the one rickety tractor it is vital to have helpful neighbours with useful machinery. We have tried contractors but they can't get their monster tractors through our little gateways and I don't think our agri-environmental scheme would look kindly on us if we hauled out centuries old slate gateposts to make way.
The 22 haylage bales are now in a neat orderly row in the field by the house and will be stacked when it is convenient (and not raining!)
The sloes are ripening. It looks like a good crop this year. We have blackthorn in every hedge surrounding every field on our 22 acres so there are always a lot of sloes. I still have about 3lbs in the freezer that I picked last year and couldn't quite afford the gin.