The silence of the chooks

No, don’t panic, there’s nothing wrong with the birds, it’s just that I’ve lost my voice and am spending a couple of days at home kicking my heels as a consequence. After all, you try being a manager when you can’t speak to the people you manage.
The voice disappeared some time on Sunday morning and I’m not sure whether it was related to choking briefly on a piece of oatcake which was being eaten as I was walking. Either that or I caught some sort of chill out on the hills in a bitter wind. By the evening it had gone altogether.
This made Sunday’s dress rehearsal for the festival play a bit of a joke. Not only were we missing the lady with the biggest part due to illness and the director was reading her lines whilst in drag, my character (the only man against seven women) then came on and started whispering and making strange gestures to try to communicate the plot. Well, we can cope with the director in drag, but if I haven’t got my voice back by tomorrow evening, the whole thing may yet descend into farce – or further, since this play is a farce.
I did try to go into work yesterday, but found it quite impossible and began to get very tired even trying to speak, so cut my losses and went home. Managed at least to get the first cut of the grass done, so no complete washout.
Gertie is now well “clocked” (on her nest, as the locals would say) as is the black chook in the coop. I have some hope that Gertie may do her job and produce another gosling, but less so for the black chook; still, we shall have to see.
Went for a walk yesterday evening with Her Maj to see the big trees – these are some of the oldest sitka(?) planted in the local forest and are massive by local comparison. They must reach a good 40 metres or more above the ground and the trunks are about 4 metres in circumference. Set in a grove alongside some spectacular cascades and small waterfalls, anywhere south of the border this would be a major draw for visitors; up here, a couple of cars may stop a day in the summer.

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