Mixed Grain and Sheet Ice

No time on Monday to post news from the chook-house – my wife flew up to Glasgow from Somerset for a job interview locally so I had to pick her up and then, well, let’s just say that the end of the evening was very romantic. After all, we haven’t seen each other for three-and-a-half weeks, not that I’m counting the days, or anything. We did enjoy our own fresh chook-eggs for breakfast, of course.
Chook-news from Monday was that I managed to obtain a couple of bags of mixed grain from the local farmer’s merchant (very nice people and plenty of choice for even the fussiest chook) and was presented with one egg when I went down about eleven at night to make sure all was well with chooks and geese. Chalky seems finally to have learned that I am in earnest about his sleeping arrangements and is regularly to be found in the chook-coop with all his fellows.
Last night was very cold and foggy, which leads me to the first part of today’s title. Up early to service the chooks, I stepped outside the back door in my trusty wellies onto the top of the three concrete steps that lead down to the patio, and my feet shot out from under me with the result that I landed on the steps, leading with my right shoulder blade. The product of all the freezing fog was a thin layer of ice over every surface, and even walking across to the garage to get the feed for the chooks was a serious and dangerous exercise. The result of the fall was that I swore a lot (which no-one fortunately heard) and badly bruised my right shoulder, making lifting or driving rather uncomfortable. Given that not only have I driven over 100 miles today for work, but taking the wife back to the airport this evening added a couple of hundred more, it’s not been the most comfortable of evenings.
The weather this morning was overcast, with occasional showers, but good, long views across the sea. Visible in the distance was the light at Dunagree Point on Inishowen in Ireland’s County Donegal, just down the road from some of the family. Very pleasant to see that light shining clear across the sea to Scotland.
There was a considerable contrast between the weather for the two drives to the airport, last night and tonight. Last night was clear and cold, with little cloud and strong moonshine across the waters of the lochs and onto the snow-cloaked mountains around Loch Lomond. Ben Lomond itself appeared as a spectral shape in the dark as we drove north alongside Loch Lomond after collecting the wife; not that she appreciated it herself on account of falling asleep after a very long day at work and travelling. Tonight, by contrast, the weather was foul and driving back through the mountains there was torrential rain and a strong gusty wind which threatened the car’s stability on some of the more difficult bends descending from the pass. Very glad to get home and find all the chooks safely tucked up for the night. No eggs today, but I can hardly blame them; who wants to risk having the darn things blowing straight back in after all the effort of laying them?

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