Monday, August 15, 2011

The north wind doth blow...

And we shall have snow
And what will poor robin do then, poor thing?
He'll sit in a barn and keep himself warm
And hide his head under his wing, poor thing.

Poor old birds don't seem to know what to do. Finches and sparrows are out gleaning the long grass for seed. I planted seed myself last week, mesclun, broad beans and lettuce and brassicca types. The glasshouse is zero degrees at the minute and outside, according to the radio it is climbing towards the high of 3 today (1.8). I went down to pick some celery for soup and checked the seed beds while I was there. No evidence of germination yet...or of celery for that matter.

I shouldn't think the snow would normally come in to this degree, except that it isn't normal snow. It's dry and powdery. The wind blows it in through the gaps.
I had the pleasure of Heather's company for four days last week and of equal worth her help in the glasshouses. We weeded, cleaned, watered and mucked with cow manure for the tomatoes. Built 5 large heaps directly on the beds with all the debris: corn stalks, bean wires, vines - there's the word, a good variety of weeds. The heap that is still warm today had blood and bone throughout which seems to have upped the temperature. Interesting.

I marvelled a bit how people seemed to get caught out with the weather, given the warning and all, but quickly realised my own preparations were lacking. Hand tools on tray turned out to be inadequately protected (above) oops, and wish I had dug a few more carrots and snips and fetched a new potato bag. Car isn't going anywhere today.

Kids were going to build an igloo, that is an 'ig' with toilet facilities. Bewilderment. 'Oh, a joke,' they said. Small laugh. Snow was too dry to pack in the boxes so they tunnelled out caves in the drifts.
By the time the snow is over I will be ready for it. Swiss M had a Swiss saying taped to the inside of her cleaning cupboard:  'Don't try to sweep up the snow while it is still snowing'. What it meant was, kids have to be allowed to play first. Don't try and clean up too soon. Not something I have ever been accused of but I take the point to heart of enjoying it while it lasts.
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