Thursday morning

Brambly Apples from next door that hang over the chicken run

Let's start with the shooting I started well and shot a 9/10 on the first stand but as the time wore on so my back gradually gave out and I had to stop two stands short as I was really unable to swing the gun.  The shooting ground is in an old quarry and so has steep climbs to the various stands which just about finished me off.  However, I did enjoy it and realised that I should have taken some pills before I went but I am trying to manage without them.  We had a burger from the van for lunch which was just the ticket and as the van is run by a very nice lady and is immaculately clean we are quite happy to eat there.  We had gone in my car but Jeff drove us back which gave me a bit of a rest.  Once home I made the coffee and Shiona and Jeff cleaned the guns.  They both went home with half a dozen eggs and Jeff had some apples and Shiona had a head of elephant garlic and I took to my bed for a sleep.  For dinner we had another round of the cheap Tesco sirloin steak but this was not as well aged and therefore much tougher.  With it we had some potato wedges cooked in double quick time in the halogen oven and some sugar snap peas that had come in my vegetable box.

Today Sandi is coming to visit but first she has been asked by the game keeper to go "dogging in".  This is basically walking with a dog and pushing the pheasants from the fields back into the woods.  At this time of the year they tend to spread out over the country side and would be impossible for the beaters to drive over the guns.  Once that is done she will make her way to us so I am expecting her around lunch time.  I thought I would make some leek and potato soup with some of Simon Hopkinsons cheese biscuits.  Then Sandi is on a mission to pick my raspberries which she is very welcome to do.  We are already sick of them and I still have some of last years in the freezer.  I do need to get into the green house and strip out the tomato plants as they now have tomato blight and are rotting fast.  The sweet peas are now at an end and they too could be pulled out and composted.

When I went to put the hens to bed last evening I noticed that we have two puff balls growing in the chicken run which I have protected from the hens with some wire.  I am not sure if hens like puff balls but I am not going to run the risk I would like a nice meal out of them once they are fully grown.

While we were out shooting Gary finished the top coat on the shed and whilst I would have preferred to put a second under coat to get a better finish at least the wood is protected from the ravages of the weather and will not need doing for a good time to come.  I believe we are in for rain today but I hope it stays off just until the raspberries are picked. 

Have a good day all and enjoy the sun if you have some...............

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