Good morning dear reader and welcome to a lovely sunny day in North Yorkshire. All in all it has been a great week for weather - hot and sunny and then one good day of lovely rain. No complaints from me, everything in the garden at Chez Comb is bloomin' lovely. No doubt a lot of the nation is a tad bleary eyed this morning, having stayed up to watch Emma Raducanu's success at the U.S. Open in New York. Such happy news after all the dark times we have been through. Many congratulations to her. Let's hope to goes from strength to strength.
It has been an unusual week for us - actually, it might be more accurate to say it has been a normal week, as most of our weeks have elements of the extraordinary in them. Most days I fit in a fast-paced walk around the village. I try to keep a reasonable level of fitness up and it gives my brain cells a much-needed rest and also I will spot any firewood going begging. Very often unwanted wood is left outside the owner's house for anyone to take. I did very well last week, toting home two nice pieces of wood. They looked like they had been used for shelving and they have made a nice base on the floor of my shed to store some of my large tubs on in the winter. But enough of that nonsense. Spouse has gone a thousand times better...
An old wooden bungalow has stood on the outskirts of the village for ninety eight years, gradually deteriorating to the point where it was in danger of collapsing altogether. Passing by one day, Spouse spotted the start of it's demolition. Never one to let the grass grow, he asked what was happening with the wood. Most of it was going to the amenity tip. Spouse asked if he could take some for firewood. 'Help yourself' was the response, 'but it all has to be gone by Thursday night.'
Heaven's pearly gates could not have been a more gladsome sight for Spouse. Over the course of the next three days, Spouse ferried wood home. The weather was roaring hot and there was no shade to be had when loading at one end and unloading at the other. He would disappear for an hour or two and reappear with the latest load, black as a rat and dripping with perspiration ... Mmm, too much information methinks. Anyway, the best I could do was rehydrate him with glasses of cold water and produce vast quantities of food at intervals and then he would be off again. The owner of the old bungalow was dismantling it and had hired two men-in-a-van to take the wood away, so no time had to be lost by Spouse in hauling his share away. And a haul it most certainly is - our gravel path to one side of the lawn at present resembles a woodyard, but never mind that - we'll certainly have toasty toes this winter and Spouse thinks he can store a lot of it at the rear of my new shed.
So, that's the wood news. But what about partying wood pigeons? I know I have written about wood pigeons before, dear reader, but really, I think this week their behaviour really takes the biscuit. I think they must be suffering from a touch of sun, or they're having an end of summer fling. From early morning to the evening gloaming, they are flying about, chasing eachother and fighting and when not fighting, getting very close up and personal if you know what I mean. I don't know if it's just our wood pigeons or it's something in the clear Yorkshire air, but they appear to have the stamina of prize stallions. Which is all well and good, dear reader, but that's as far as it goes. It was nest building time recently and we watched them flying to and fro into the Ash tree carrying large twigs in their beaks. I can only think that our lot must have been at the back of the queue when God gave out the instructions for nest building for pigeons. Ours are uttely useless. For weeks on end I have been gathering up the fallen twigs and gazing up through the branches of the Ash tree - there is no sign of a nest taking shape. I don't know where they have resorted to in laying their eggs, but I keep coming across broken ones in the garden - but never in the same place. Mmm, I don't know what to make of that.
Now I mentioned at the start of this blog that we had had a good day's rain this week. It was indeed very welcome and our lawn and borders gratefully soaked it up. And so did the pigeons. Yes, I appreciate a good soaking of their dusty wings would be welcome, but our wood pigeons went one better. All thoughts of love and war went out the window as the heavy rains fell. They all jumped in our pond and blissfully partied - jumping on and off the stones and splashing crazily in the water, jumping back on to the stones, a shake of the wings and back in again. Spouse and I stood and watched them - it was mesmerising and seemed quite bonkers in view of the rain battering down on them. However, I suppose that wood pigeons know their own business best and if partying in the rain is their thing ... Glastonbury for birds I guess. We have had hot and dry days since then, so I am looking forward to the next rains - bring on the party - I might join in.
Well, dear reader, time to go and make Spouse and I a morning coffee. He is busy putting a coat of varnish on my new shed and then he has hopes of getting inside his own mega-shed and sorting it out, now that I have removed all my horticultural detritus from it and he will be able to swing the proverbial cat in it - do not be alarmed, we do not have a cat. I am a little apprehensive, as when he was collecting all the wood, the owner dismantling the bungalow had 'a serious piece of kit' acording to Spouse - some new kind of powered Reciprocating Saw. By the happy glint in Spouse's eye, I can see that is the next thing on the shopping list. Ah, boys and toys. Will I worry about that one any more than I do about the large 'executioner's' axe? I will have to wait and see. Have a good weekend, dear reader and I hope to see you next week.