Z levels up

In the bottom picture of yesterday’s post, you might have noticed a small galvanised trough full of water. You might even have observed that it was brimful. This has been a nuisance because it has overflowed constantly on several occasions in the last three or four years. We’ve shored up one end, tied the ballcock at the feed-in end, bent the bar holding the ballcock (Jonny the farmer did that, it was beyond my strength and even LT’s) and it only helped for a while. But the tank needed to be cleaned out anyway, so Wince the gardener kindly bucketed out the water, I having tied up the ballcock (I do hope everyone knows what that is and doesn’t think I’m being rude. While we’re about it, don’t you think that cockchafer is the Best Bug Name Evah?) and then I tipped it on one side to scrub and rinse it.

It turned out that it wasn’t possible to add bricks at one corner to build it up, as I’d planned, but I was able to remove a piece of concrete slab from the highest corner to lower that end instead. This seems to have sorted it out, though it’s still got a higher water level than I really want. Anyway, I’m pleased to have it done, though I smelt a bit funky for the rest of the day. I said to Wince, it reminds me of the river mud I used to frolic in as a child. I didn’t mind the smell, though it was just as well Tim isn’t here to be obliged to politely not notice.

My usual keenness over cooking has escaped me. I’ve had cheese for lunch and a thrown-together meal in the evening. Tonight’s was straight out of the freezer, in fact; salmon and roasted vegetables left over from a meal before lockdown. When Tim is away, I eat the single portion leftovers I’ve frugally frozen, but he’s not been away for nearly three months and several of them are languishing there. I’m genuinely considering buying an everyday freezer and putting the big chest one down in the workshop, even though I know that would be really stupid.

I don’t think freezers are very well designed, in truth. Upright ones hardly hold anything, whereas with big chest freezers, most stuff gets lost in the bottom. I haven’t got a better design myself, though there should be one.

Scrabble is still sitting and the coop awaits her and chicks. Neville, who is putting up the new fence, found a clutch of three eggs yesterday and showed them to me. I thought I’d leave them, to see if a bantam is laying there currently. She is. Today, there are four. I’ll mark them tomorrow and start taking one every day. I really don’t want more chicks. It’s not exactly a lot of work, but it is a good deal of bother. I can find homes for surplus chickens, that’s not the problem, though surplus cockerels is and there are always more boys than girls.

Eloise cat has spent the night and day in her crate, except for a few times when I’ve let her out into the room. She doesn’t walk more than a few steps and that’s at a hobble. I have little hope that it’s just a strain. Unless there’s a marked improvement over the weekend, I’ll phone the vet on Monday and ask to be booked in with the specialist.

I also did some weeding in the front garden, which always comes last in the pecking order. I weeded until I was bored, strimmed away some weeds until I was bored, and so on. I have a very low attention span, but quite a lot was done in half an hour. I’m pleased with my battery-driven strimmer. It’s a girlie’s tool really, it has a plastic ‘blade’ instead of a spool but the battery lasts well and I can’t manage the weight of a petrol one. I’m happy to be a girlie, albeit a very old one.

Eloise is finally pawing away in her litter tray. She has lasted for 36 hours without using it. Cats are fine using one after the first time, but can hang on for ages initially.

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