Monday 27 November 2023

The last week of November

A couple of days ago I had my 4th (and hopefully final) eye surgery since the end of July. At last all looks good! I am behind in a lot of smallholding tasks as a result but all the essentials are covered. 

Today is grey, cold and raining but spirits are not dampened.  

The last week of November

Winter darkness slowly begins to lift.

The far line of Scots pines are veiled in mist.

Dawn arrives with a penetrating chill,

On the brink of frost, stagnant, silent, still.

A sullen sky, dull like a pewter shroud

Over the flat, black fields recently ploughed.

The trees have long lost their autumnal blaze,

Their leaves lay limp, flattened by rainy days.

Tranquil ewes cluster around the hay rack,

Some with coloured smudges upon their back.

Beneath the oak cyclamen flower white,

Amidst the gloom a heartfelt fleck of light.

The beaver moon lights up the sky at night,

Portent of a future hopefully bright.

Though November days seem forever bleak,

The season of Advent begins next week.

Friday 10 November 2023

Metal shed experiment


This is our new metal shed, measuring 8' x 6'. It looks very smart. What will not be apparent to onlookers is the agonies and the inordinate amount of hours that went into constructing it, even with the helping hand of my brother. The shed arrived in three packages containing an enormous quantity of components. The instructions were  not easy to follow and in places lacked essential details. An error at one stage in the process meant subsequent steps would not work, leaving no choice but to backtrack and undo an earlier step. 

I have erected wooden sheds of similar dimensions by myself in 2 or 3 hours. We decided on a metal shed with a slab floor to reduce the risk of incursions by rodents. It is to be used as a replacement to our livestock feed shed, so there is good reason to make it as rodent proof as possible.

We have plans for another, larger shed later. I think I'll revert to a wooden construction of my own design, albeit a bit more epensive to build.