Absolutely no complaining because we have had a wonderful autumn of warm sunny days. Dad Green was able to tidy up loose ends before the winter, greasing gate bolts, fixing the draughty parlour doors and putting away the window boxes ready for next spring, all in rolled-up shirt sleeves – marvellous!
The cows spent the first night in on Bonfire night, not out of any consideration of frightening them with fireworks, (we didnt both this year as the girls were all away and we have really gone off the idea of any sort of fire, even barbecues were limited in the summer). The beginning of November brought the first change of more wet and chilly climes; but Tim is not complaining, the last time we had a season this good was the year we arrived, 1983. Both he and the cows thought they had come to paradise, out until December.
Cherry came home for a brief half-term and it was fun comparing notes and classroom stories. She is teaching youngsters from 16 upwards, some not much younger than herself but considerably bigger, a daunting task, but she seems to be coping.
Abi has gone back to Uni at Caen to continue her studies in theatre, and she has been rehearsing and playing various roles with a students drama group. We go to see her when we can, although the plays are often making a statement – Edward Bonds War Plays, an actor friend assured me, are just as difficult to understand in English – or they are deep and philosophical; weve sat through Antigone and Phädre, in French. Im really looking forward to the day she appears in a light and frothy farce where her Mum can have a good giggle but I get a look of utter disdain any time I mention my preference. She now chooses when I can go to watch and when Id be better off at home!
Beth is enjoying her student life in Bergen. She is trying to learn the language in between English courses and working in the students bar with her boyfriend Pierre. They were lucky enough to see the Northern Lights one weekend, apparently they are very impressive. Since then they have had snow and the days are getting much shorter. She may even appreciate a typical Normandy winter when she comes home for Christmas.
Hunting has started and the first day on the estate was a resounding success with five wild boar shot. We were given an enormous piece of meat which will look well on the table in a few weeks time.
After a very quiet summer due to foot-and-mouth, we are now having a stream of visitors for weekends or short visits, and this afternoon, after a very brief week-end, we waved goodbye to Rowan Hill who was farmers weekly Farms Secretary when Tim started working at Conrick. There was much reminiscing and swapping of photos, and lots of reassuring that we all look just the same, except of course the girls. It was fun.