Wednesday, 17 April 2013

Swallows Arrival, Cottage Springtime Repairs, Cows & Lambs Out

Hip, hip hooray, calloo callay, the swallows have arrived at last! They are a week or so later than usual but then the weather has been so cold that one can hardly blame them for not rushing back. The Farmer & I saw our first swallow yesterday evening at Mwnt beach near Cardigan, and then this morning the Farmer reported that he had seen a couple winging around the yard, so spring has definitely arrived.

With a few days without people staying in the cottage I have been attending to the running repairs necessary after three weeks occupation by families with young children. The paint work suffers dreadfully so I have been rubbing down with sand-paper and touching up the patches of flaked & chipped paint work in the bathroom  & entrance hall. Yesterday the weather was perfect for painting and leaving the doors open to allow warm spring air to circulate. Today it is a very different picture, cold, windy & wet & certainly not conducive to spring-cleaning of any kind.

The garden has suffered badly in the last few weeks with the bitter cold. I have found that two large extremely vigourous rosemary bushes have been blasted by the east wind and are now brown crisp ghosts of  their former selves and the big strong hydrangeas have had their new buds killed off. I think the hydrangeas will recover but I'm not so sure about the rosemarys. The daffodils are flowering well though for many days they looked as though they were hunching their shoulders against the cold and they are now taking a battering by the rain & wind.

On the farm the cows have gone out to grass but are still needing to be fed silage and so they are still coming in at night. The lambs are all doing well and can be seen gambolling around the fields or when the sun shines lying stretched out sound asleep beside their vast woolly mothers.

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