Herefordshire Week 108: Tuesday 18 – Monday 24 January 2022

Good walking, lots of socialising and Abergavenny.


Tuesday morning started cold and frosty and a with hint of mist making everything pale. We walked to Ewyas Harold and back, taking the Deer Field up to the Common and down through the Recreation Ground, and returning via my Childhood Route across the Common before dropping down to Dore Abbey and onto the footpath behind Abbey Dore Court.

Deer in the Deer Field
Deer in the Deer Field

Busy week at work. VWW and Family Zoom ensured 6.30pm finishes at least 2 out of 3 evenings. Shattered on Thursday.


VERY cold overnight Thursday/Friday – the bird bath font ice was a solid lump. Inspired by Jean’s tip that it was better to use a saucepan of boiling water sat on the ice to melt holes in the ice on the pond, I rescued two baked bean tins from the recycling, bodgered a pair of holes at the top of each one and threaded through some string handles. Down at the pond, sat them on the ice, and added boiling water. Worked like a dream.

Patent pending on my "melt holes in pond ice" old tin cans invention
Patent pending on my “melt holes in pond ice” old tin cans invention

Pottered around the garden for most of the day – raked up hedge cuttings in the Orchard, checked the compost bin (still rat proof – although you can see where it’s dug holes to try to get underneath), filled some small holes, cut back a wild plum growing out of one of the small apple trees.

I also cleared the paving slabs, earth and plastic sheet from the third veg bed. I’ve decided to take it out – I decided my instincts were telling me something, not having dug it over or done anything with it since dad and I constructed it. So last job of the day was unscrewing the wooden planks, completed just as dad and Jean arrived for the 4pm snowdrop viewing followed by tea and cake.

Fish & Chips from The Stables with T&J, with the log stove luring us into the lounge to round off the day.


Up early on Saturday to another overnight frost. Down to Abbey Dore to rendezvous with A and on over the Common for the 6 mile Ewyas Harold Llangua Circular with the GVWC. Some familiar childhood footpaths and a lot more up and down than anticipated. A late lunch and pint of bitter shandy at The Temple got me home, although I did come a cropped on the steep muddy descent to Dore Abbey.

GVWC Ewyas Harold Llangua Circular: View towards Kentchurch
GVWC Ewyas Harold Llangua Circular: View towards Kentchurch
GVWC Ewyas Harold Llangua Circular: Strava Elevation Graph
GVWC Ewyas Harold Llangua Circular, plus walk there and back: Strava Elevation Graph

A bit shattered by all that being sociable, and a failed attempt to get the bonfire going. But a pot of tea and a mince pie, and a bit of an almost-snooze by the log stove, recharged my batteries ahead of cheese and wine up the road in Kerrys Gate. A very sociable evening. Smashing.

Took things easier on Sunday, enjoying the log stove and The Thursday Murder Club audio book.

Monday was admin, then off to Abergavenny in the afternoon to celebrate 20 years.

Twenty Years.....
Twenty Years…..

Long-tailed tits are becoming more frequent visitors to the bird feeder.

Long-tailed Tit, Great Tit, Blue Tit
Queuing up: Long-tailed Tit, Great Tit, Blue Tit

TV: Mare of Easttown, Landscapers, Friday Night Lights.

Podcasts: History Extra, The Memory Palace, The EssayIn Our Time, Books and Authors.

Audiobook: The Thursday Murder Club.


Photos: Herefordshire week 108 on Flickr.

Phil: w/e 2022-01-23.