Wednesday, 9 December 2009

Hola! Roof, poles & ebooks

This is our side field, now planted with grass. Trouble is that there is almost the same quantity of dock weeds growing in it as well. Looks like there is going to be a war between the two. Tall growing and virulently productive, the docks are the likely winners.

Last year I thought they were a possibility for wild foodying, whereby one harvests from what is growing naturally about the place. So last year, in the back field, I allowed a group of docks to grow, as can be seen above. Oh dear! That was a mistake. Becoming preoccupied with builders, web site re-does, and a stonkingly hot and lovely summer, I neglected to harvest these docks. As I say: Oh dear! Because now we are in danger of only having docks on the fields and nothing else. They are very keen to put up high seed heads, thus parenting a huge population of themselves. And I have kind of gone off that idea of harvesting them because they are now becoming an enemy. And I have most definitely gone off the idea of planting them intentionally just so we can harvest them directly rather than from the wild.

And arriving yesterday was our fence poles for the side field, being the second phase of our plan to have live-stock on, the first being to plough and seed the land with grass. Hubs says sheep. Six.

With dismay we have been observing the race between the grass waking up from its seed pods and the dock seeds doing the same. The docks are winning. Vigorously they are taking command of the field.

Nothing for it. Got to do a bit of weeding. Out I go. Feeling silly at first with my wellies, bucket, fork. It is a big field. I fill the bucket quickly. Go empty it into the wheelbarrow by the field entrance. Can't wheel the wheel barrow on the field because the ground is still too soft from the recent rain. Need to get onto the ground, though, even though very soft (but not squelchy soft just enough to sink the foot by about an inch), because the docks are b******gg**rs to get out. Deep rooted, even though babies, one has to drive down one's fork beneath the baby grass then wiggle out the dock seedling trying not to disturb the grass seedlings. It is a task.

And then there are the parent plants, still in the ground, still growing. They are even tougher b****gg**rs. Great long roots do they have. Nothing for it but to plunge the hands into the soil itself and drag out the root, avoiding any worms which might be living their life in the vicinity as well.

With great relief, the Jean-Pierre turned up again to get going with the other half of the roof. Four weeks he has been away, during which we felt, quite frankly, abandoned. "Not to worry", we kept on saying, meanwhile fretting away inside especially when a wind did blow up and memories of the January tempest flickered back into our minds. Having a gazebo squashed is one thing, but having the roof take flight is another!

Anyway, here he is, back up on the roof and single-handedly getting Labartere properly water-proofed.

Meanwhile, have done final read of first book, and uploaded it to Lulu, the self publishing website. Next project: get it into ebook format. Dwindling away rapidly was my urge to do this myself when confronted by the techno-speak that accompanied the instructions. "Easy" said Lulu. "Who for?" I shouted back, as I felt my head scrambling up into its usual fogginess when confronted by stuff it doesn't have a clue about. Nothing for it: Email > links noted> shipped over to Hubs/Tech Team Guy' PC.

And as I came off the field yesterday, having filled five buckets of docks from my afternoon weeding session, I felt quite, quite, happy. The sun was shining, a warm wind was wafting, my back was aching, my muscles were trembling from the effort of rooting around in the soil for dock roots, my fingers were grimed and mucky, my fork was hoisted over one shoulder, the full bucket was dragging heavily on my other side, on my left was Bools and on my right was Gus, and all of us walked through the softness of the long field in companionable partnership. It was a grand moment.

Things I have learnt today: that being out on the land is a delight. It is good for the soul. It is good for the health. It is good for the heart. It is good for the mind. And that it is better to look back at what one has achieved rather than look at what one has got to do.

It is a big field!


Ron said...

Ahhhh, reading this made me feel great! I love your analogy of being in the field. I too can relate. I know exactly what you mean! Sometimes, the simplest things you do in life brings you the most satisfaction. Hmmm, I'm feelin it.
Hope you're well. Good luck with the book. Hope to read it one day.

Vera said...

Thanks for visiting and your best wishes in regards the book. It is about how I got to become a psychic when I never thought I would and how I grew as a person along the way. And I am thinking that perhaps a book is somewhere in your future to. When you have time. When you have the mental space. Writing about how I became skilled at what I do and what my life was doing as I did so was a very cathartic experience for me. And I am thinking that this would be the same for you. Writing about your life sort of tidies up all those memories and puts them into order so one can sense of why things happened when they did. And the realisation came to me that nothing is random. That there seems to be a greater plan in one's life if one takes up the opportunities which come along. Blessings to you, Ron.

Barry said...

As someone who is also working on a book, I can certainly agree it can be a very cathartic experience.

Of course so can working outside in a healthy environment.

I loved your post today.

Vera said...

Oh hi Barry. Visited you yesterday, and saw that the chemo is pushing you down a bit. Glad you are up at your PC. And WOW!!! You are writings as well. Oh I am so thrilled when people are having a go themselves. Are you self publishing? I am at the moment. Good luck with it anyway. And thanks for popping by.

Anonymous said...

I couldn't agree more with that last paragraph. My uncle always tried to instill in me the importance of being out on the land. It took me some time, but now I really appreciate how important it is.

Vera said...

What a good teacher your uncle was Des - it sounds like he taught you a lot. Nice to have you visit.