Tim is back, hooray. I can’t say that it’s been the easiest week – Eloise cat has been quite fractious and, while wishing to go outside, wouldn’t walk on a lead but just lay down and looked sulky. She also had a stomach upset, if I can put it delicately, which came upon her suddenly and necessitated the cleaning of paws and everything else afterwards, to her dismay. Today, however, it’s been different. She had a pleasant potter around the garden for an hour or so and, later, she enjoyed lying in the long grass thinking about the meaning of life, or whatever cats think about. I had taken the precaution of carrying a chair with me, so I could ponder in comfort too.
I did want the chair, because my back aches somewhat, as a result of moving chicken coops yesterday. After the awfulness of having four clutches of chicks at a time, four years ago – 32 chicks in all as well as my 30 adult bantams – I didn’t expect ever to want chicks again and I kept the hens indoors, albeit with lots of room – a 40×14 foot greenhouse plus a sizeable run of about 10×20 foot – so that they couldn’t indulge in their favourite pastime of laying away, vanishing for three weeks and then turning up with adorable chicks that had to be looked after and worried about. But, having lost all my hens to a wretched dog and a beastly fox (I suspect a pair of ’em), I missed our dear bantams that we’d had for 30 years. The only ones left were Rose’s. And Canasta is the most maternal of the three, and she disappeared ten days ago, to sit on her eggs. Rose found her and now we’ve moved her to the coop, along with thirteen eggs. They should hatch in about ten days, so fingers crossed.
Anyway, that’s the reason my back aches, but never mind. Eloise cat has had a lovely day and is so much more tranquil, having been out in the garden for two or three hours. And I finally potted up all the tomato plants. Just the aubergines and chillies to go, and they’re not quite big enough yet.
Speaking of chillies, Tim has brought back a kilo of them, to make our delicious relish. De-seeding and shredding a kilo of chillies is quite a thing, though.