… is that they are always plotting… they always look like they’re up to no good. In fact, I think chickens are probably responsible for secret revolutions everywhere. George Orwell was very wrong with his decision that the leaders would be pigs, as in Animal Farm. I understand the allegory of leaders being pigs, though that’s unfair on pigs. It would be chickens. They’re evil with their dinosaur feet and their beady eyes and their plotting ways. Pigs are fat and happy. Chickens are restless revolutionaries. I’m sure this is why Cuba is such a revolutionary place, because there are millions of chickens roaming about there. Our chickens mostly spend their time plotting the downfall of the dogs – the military junta of our sovereignty – and chasing Moll off. However, they have busily been stealing my blackcurrants and redcurrants – then pretending they had nothing to do with it when I asked them.
My laryngitis has subsided somewhat to a pointless hacking cough – and my voice sounds more like my own voice rather than Barbara’s from The League of Gentlemen. If you haven’t seen her, she’s a post-op transsexual taxi driver in a strange village. The operation was not particularly successful and she has a deeper voice than most men.
Me & Stephen have been busy in the garden, as per… the polytunnel #2 collapsed in his absence and he was most distressed. However we have begun our harvesting – only radishes, peas and lettuce, but enough to keep us going until the main crops start. The potatoes are already beginning to flower – the broad beans are fattening up. We have radishes the size of turnips and turnips the size of swedes. It’s been so dry though – not a single drop of proper rain, other than a light soaking a couple of mornings – since the third of April – that’s almost a month. Luckily, the existing polytunnel has a super-duper watering system courtesy of Mr Stephen and it’s lush in there, at probably tropical temperatures and humidity. Unfortunately, whoever is in there is often caught out by the watering system being switched on by Tilly. Tilly has had the blame several times for me getting a good soaking, although Stephen’s insistence that it is her is a little suspicious considering she doesn’t have opposable thumbs to turn taps or a single thought in her head other than where to bury bread rolls, eggs or bits of things she might want later.
We’re now full to brimming in the polytunnel and all the plots are bursting – not just with plants, but with les mauvaises herbes. Bad grass. Naughty grass gets everywhere and I’m so tired of convolvulus that I dreamt about it last night.
Steve is convinced that things have grown exponentially since he departed two weeks ago – he’s right. We have full lettuce heads and tomatoes beginning to put out flowers too. I’m absolutely amazed and delighted by it all!
10 things I’m loving today:
1. The Boy’s improved mood after I threatened to withdraw his right to electricity if he answered me back just one more time.
2. Steve, stick-man, saying he needs to go on a diet because he’s reached 12 stone! He needed a bit of meat to keep him warm.
4. Verbena… I’d have hundreds of verbena if I could afford it:
5. Steve relishing the chorizo and pepper risotto last night; nothing like old favourites that weren’t old favourites a year ago! I love cooking here, even if I only have one work surface! We’re also infested by ants.
6. Lemon, glycerine and honey home-made cough medicine
7. Sleeping with the window open
8. Cheerful lettuces in rows:
9. Brocante season. I love a good rummage, me! Brocantes, vide-greniers and bric-a-bracs are French car boot sales. And they love a bit of recycling.
10. Spending hours looking through photos my Nana has entrusted to me of her final 10 years with my Gramps. Happy pictures of the most lovely people in the world.
And 3 things I’m not loving:
1. Tilly getting up for a wee at 4:00 a.m. on my red patent leather shoes and me not realising what she was doing until it was done
2. Coughing for half an hour before getting back to sleep
3. The smell of nettle liquid feed. Evil.