(Playing catch up)
VROOOOOOOM! Picked up my Mazda MX-5. How nice is this?
Tuesday was a gorgeous day, hard to believe November can be so mild and sunny, and – occasionally – hot. Phil and I had a lovely morning’s walk to Ewyas Harold and back – the Deer Field and Ewyas Harold Common there and the Common and Dore Abbey back. We sat outside on the patio for coffee once we got home, and had lunch al fresco too.
I’d peeled and salted a bag of pickled onions on Monday evening, which meant 24 hours later I put them into jars for pickling. Two jars got the vinegar from the Psycho Pickled Onions we’d finished off earlier this year (aka the EXTRA HOT CHILLI ones) and the third jar got normal malt vinegar. Should last me a while.
Usual Tuesday afternoon to Thursday evening: work, with VWW on Wednesday and Family Zoom on Thursday.
Obviously, the highlight of the week was heading down to Ross on Wye to pick up my Brilliant Black Mazda MX-5 from Bowen’s Garage, once I’d paid the balance and sorted out insurance (not so much of a highlight).
I cannot rate the team at Bowen’s Garage highly enough – great car, outstanding customer service from start to finish. Five Stars.
Not a practical car, but sometimes you just have to indulge….. and the drive back, under sunny skies with the roof off, was fab.
I had been a bit anxious about picking the car up this morning, wondering if I’d made an expensive stupid mistake. But having driven it home I don’t think I have – it even got two gents at The Forge talking when I pulled in for petrol.
Now I shall just have to work on looking glamorous.
After all the excitement, I spent the afternoon mowing the grass. The ride on mower wouldn’t start, so I did the edges etc with the Honda mower while the battery recharged, and then had a bonfire burning the stubborn hedge trimmings and the boxes of St Andrews-era letters that dad had been keeping in the loft. If you give things long enough, memories are enough. You don’t need “stuff”.
On Saturday morning I had my long awaited booking at Ledbury Repair Café to get the replacement motor fitted into Jean’s Kenwood Chef. I’d blown the motor earlier in the year. Phil persuaded me to drive there and back in the Mazda. Oh, alright then.
Vroooooom and Zooooooom.
Having left the mixer in the Repair Team’s capable hands, we pottered around the shops and calmed down over excellent coffee and cake in the The Malthouse courtyard.
Back home, mixer repaired, we had a late lunch and then I got stuck in to sorting out the last of my loft boxes, which had turned out to contain various scrapbooks and travel souvenirs, including the Queen’s Silver Jubilee (1977), Family trip to the Somme (1980), and Inter-Railing (1991).
A Duo of Domestic To Dos wrapped up a busy day – decanting this year’s Blackberry Gin into bottles and having my first go at making yoghurt in a thermos flask. Janette’s “recipe” – and careful temperature reading – meant the yoghurt turned out beautifully. A lot easier / cheaper than the yoghurt maker!
Sunday was another gorgeous day, so we did the Terrific Tremorithic circuit in the morning, and I mowed in the afternoon. The ride on mower started fine and I whizzed around – a lot of leaves, not so much grass at this time of year.
I even had time before dinner to get most of the Thomas Medallion White porcelain dinner service listed on eBay.
We had Martin Watkins and Jon with us for most of the day Monday, installing the upgraded, updated fuse box, strip lights in the loft, a second set of sockets in the utility room and more. All very satisfying.
I left Phil In Charge for the morning and had a lovely walk – another dry day – over to Ewyas Harold via the Deer Field and the Common. A new route back on footpaths from the Recreation Ground to Home Farm, over Dulas Brook for a short stretch on the road, then through the grounds of Dulas Court and footpaths up through Witney Wood, sheep fields and Cott Farm back to the Common. Home via the Abbey and the footpath behind Abbey Dore Court, and the Canns Hill footpath. Magic.
Gardening in the afternoon, pruning the crab apple tree and the Herefordshire Russet sapling, and filling in the holes left by the garden railway infrastructure Phil’s removed, which involved hauling some of the bags of earth dad’s been gifting us from the orchard and across the front lawn.
In wildlife news, we’ve got squirrels and birds feasting on the yew tree’s red berries and seeds. There’s a great gallery view from the en suite. On Saturday morning we had redwings and thrushes bombing around, and a squirrel practising its acrobatic skills.
On the varmint front, Phil’s current hit rate – literally – on the garage mice is 1-a-day. Soon there will be none left. Surely! At least the apple racks are untouched.
TV: Happy Valley, Worzel Gummidge, Hip-Hop Evolution and The Last Dance.
Podcasts: Keeping up with regulars History Extra and Bookclub; trying out Answer Me This, Lingthusiam and Futility Closet.
Photos: Herefordshire week 97 on Flickr.
Phil: w/e 2021-11-07.