The eggs in the incubator to my right are now in their 11th day; 13 Maran eggs and one 'mongrel' to make up the numbers to a lucky 14. I candled them last evening - Maran eggs are notoriously difficult because the shells are such a dark brown, but I think I saw a dark patch which would indicate they are fertile and developing. The little machine continues to buzz and hum, tilting this way and then that so the eggs are partially turned. A little motorised pump periodically pumps a squirt of water into a sponge to keep the humidity at 45%. All very clever stuff - to think a mere hen can do the same thing without having read the instruction book - and for free.
I like doing the drawings very much. In fact I'm very fond of gardening on paper - no weeds, slugs or bugs and everything is always just so - that sometimes I think I might prefer it to the slog and grind of actual gardening. A world where climbers always climb to exactly 3m, shrubs fill the spaces allotted, colour schemes are harmonious and there is year-round interest - effortlessly. I use paper and old-fashioned drawing pens (remember the Rotring?) and have never tried to find a computer programme to do it for me. For someone who adopts an relaxed laissez-faire attitude to most things in life I'm remarkably precise with my scale rule, set square and pen.
Tucked out of sight but also on the workbench is some paperwork from that bête noir in my life - the WI. It's a recruitment drive. It takes the form of an invitation I've devised. We're inviting potential
Finally on the edge of my picture, most enticingly is Monty Don's 'The Ivington Diaries'. Here's a man who perhaps relishes getting down and dirty with a spade in the garden and then writes so eloquently about it. No fiddling about on bits of A2 paper with a scratchy pen for him. It's my book of the moment and I'm going to lift it off the workbench and go and read it. Now.
(If you manage to wade through the bits and pieces here hop over to Julia's blog and see what the real craftspeople get up to.)