Monday 21 December 2015

The rain it raineth every day!

This is how it should be but is not!
The rain has gone beyond biblical in that we are now well over the forty days & forty nights endured by Noah and not an Ark in sight! Every day sees us donning waterproofs and setting out to do the chores sliding & squelching through the mud that has overrun every surface of the tracks and yards. At least we have enough housing for all the cattle so they are dry and comfortable. The tractors churn up the mud of course just making it worse and walking through the fields is wellnigh impossible as they are so saturated and soggy. Two days ago I had to go out to our local village in the car and drove past flooded fields where the river Teifi has overflowed its banks to an extent we have not seen for along time. Bridges in the area have been impassable with the flood water up to the top of the parapets. Torrents of water were running down our driveway and our little old stone bridge was a lake as its drainage holes could not cope with the quantity of water running down though water was gushing through them at a great rate. It seems there is to be no let up according to the Met Office and there is more heavy rain & winds due to arrive...we really are dreaming of a white Christmas!(See picture!)

Today is of course the winter solstice, the longest night which heralds the change when the sun begins to be seen for a little longer each day. Mid-winter was a time of celebration and feasting and has in our modern times become absorbed into the Christmas festivities. Decking the halls with holly & ivy are remnants of the ancient pagan rituals and lighting candles to banish the darkness and welcome back the light.

Nadolig Llawen a Penblwydd Newydd Hapus!

Friday 4 December 2015

Jack Russell Puppies, Royal Welsh Winter Fair, Organic Distillery

Aren't they lovely? 15 days old and thriving. Their eyes opened this week and they will soon be rampaging around in their nest driving their ever anxious mother to distraction.She is convinced that the labradors will eat them though they are just being curious but she sees them off with much growling and terrier-swearing and they are suitably cowed and slink off pretending they have something much more interesting to attend to.

At last we have dry morning. The incessant rain lately has been hideous and depressing. The whole farm is soggy and the ground is saturated so walking across the fields is like walking on a sponge. Ghastly! As well as the downpours we have had very strong winds so there are fallen branches everywhere. There has been serious flooding locally with fire service having to rescue people from their cars apparently.
On Monday we went to the Royal Welsh Winter Fair at Builth Wells despite the weather. We had arranged to meet up with an old friend whom we had not seen for several years so we braved the rain and drove up into mid-Wales. It did not stop raining the whole day and yes, we got very damp but as most of the Fair was under cover it was not as bad as it could have been though those poor traders in little tents outside did suffer with the wind blowing and because of the rain people were not very willing to stop and peruse what was on offer but walked hurriedly on to the big pavilions where there were many trade stands of all kinds...the show is a big shopping opportunity, anything from a huge tractor to a mole-trap to an antique diamond ring! I spoke to a friend who was there with his wonderful award winning cheeses and organic spirits (excellent gin!)and he was not having a good day simply because of the weather. I bought a bottle of his seaweed gin made in the Da Mhile distillery in west Wales, just a few miles from the farm,, which is the first organic distillery in the UK.