The meetings went well and were less stuffy than the last one of that ilk that I’d been to, many years ago, which I credit to our rector and his wife. And I’m a churchwarden again, *sigh* which I’d never intended to be, but we’ve been lacking one (out of two) for several years and my conscience overcame me, not in a religious sense but because I’m very fond of Brenda, who’s been holding the fort for a very long time. And everyone liked all the food and the chickens enjoyed the leftovers today.
The chickens are very happy. Not only did they get tasty snacks but they had been allowed out onto fresh grass. Poultry lockdown came early last winter, but restrictions have been lifted earlier too, which maybe was a sensible thing. I’m sorry to say that avian flu is now widespread among wild birds and I think we’ll have to live with it. My girls are pretty safe anyway, as I don’t let them out into the garden any more – I’m very sad about this as I loved to see them scratching about in the flower beds and to be greeted by hopeful treat-seekers every time I went to the door, but I couldn’t cope with all the chicks that the stop-outs brought back after a three-week absence. In another couple of years, I’ll have to make a decision whether to rear some more chicks (or rather, allow their mothers to hatch and rear them) or to let the Churchyard Chickens live their lifespan and then stop. It could be, of course, that a friend will take on a broody hen and carry on that way. But that’s in the future and now is now.
I went to a lecture today about Alfred Cohen. I had no idea how much I would love his paintings. I didn’t even know, until I read the programme, that he was American. I’m embarrassed. Since he lived in North Norfolk, I assumed he was British, to the extent I’d thought about it. I didn’t know that he’d rethought his style of painting several times, I was ignorant – and still am, of course, but at least I know that my ignorance is my loss, now. If I could paint, his manner of figurative abstraction would be my ambition – though with landscape rather than his use of water (not always water, but those were the ones I liked very much) because water would always be way above my pay grade. Though painting anything to give me pleasure is, frankly, so we’re talking pie in the sky here.
Then we went to lunch. We’d hoped to meet up with Rose and her chap, but it didn’t work out and I suggested a local place that does salads and so on, and Wink suggested another, rather more gourmet. She was treating, so hey… We both had the smoked mackerel starter, with grilled smoked mackerel, smoked mackerel pâté, pickled cucumber and wild garlic sauce, then she had chicken – I don’t know how that was cooked, though there was chorizo and some cabbage – and I had mushroom and wild garlic risotto, which was divine. Wild garlic has a very short season and I eat it at all opportunities.