...mostly in pictures:
Well, I didn't go to buy pups I went to buy some hens. I wanted Rhode Island Reds - a good dual purpose bird and a breed which isn't as readily available as I had hoped. We found some eventually on a farm up in the hills up beyond Llanfair Caereinion. Puppies, hens, geese, ducks and peacocks seem to co-exist quite happily if a tad chaotically. All the stock seemed healthy and I came away with 4 young layers and a mighty cockerel.
We all know how difficult it is to get a good photograph of a hen - let alone a penful of the critters - it's a bit like photographing a group of children. There is always somebody gurning, scratching or turning round. See what I mean here? Backs turned, heads down and even when I manage a head shot it's such an evil visage I rather wish I'd not bothered.
Daniel came and stayed for the night en route to some arduous, mountain trail. It was his birthday too - 30 - and the many kilometres he planned to cycle were his way of celebrating. Me? I'll settle for cake.
We've had some beautiful weather too; it's now possible to see a tinge of green in the trees and hedges. On lower ground I've noticed the hedges are almost in leaf. Shrewsbury's unlovely by-pass was almost pretty on Thursday morning with young fresh greens and frothy white blackthorn. I wonder how many of the motorists rushing by noticed just how beautiful the embankments were. Thursday was a day for 'me' - a restorative visit to the hairdresser and a mooch round the shops. My shopping mojo had deserted me though and I came away empty handed. Something it helps to buy something - anything - to set you off on a spree, but even trying to break my buying duck by purchasing a note pad and pens didn't work. Perhaps it was the combination of the last days of the Easter holidays and the rails and rails of flimsy summer clothes that were unhelpful. There was a distinct chill in the air and bikinis and strappy tops made me shiver.
I've planted broad beans and peas outside and the penalty for any marauding pheasant who fancies scratching for supper will be severe. The first few spears of asparagus are through. How quickly they grow. Again, you pheasants 'Watch it or Else'.
The brave hunting dog, Chester found the beginnings of a pheasant's nest; a single egg on a bed of leaves in a patch of long grass and daffodils. For once he didn't rush in and eat first but stood patiently waiting for me to check it out. That's progress perhaps.
And flowers - colour at last. (Though white blossom can hardly be said to be colourful.)
The pink primroses are a bit of an oddity - in reality not such a horrid pink as my photograph makes them. We're not sure if they are a wild variant or the result of a bit of primrose promiscuousness. Anybody got any ideas?
Then there was a Jamie Oliver Party (think posh Tupperware), Granny T's funeral and the next instalment of fettling the Village Hall Garden.....
Finally the news that Doreen and I have been waiting for - our book 'Marton, the story of a Shropshire village' should be with us at the end of next week. I'm always a little reticent about mentioning real names in this place but feel now, as our names are going to be on the front cover it's hardly an issue. We also need all the publicity we can get as we need to sell, sell, SELL. 800 books are going to take up a lot of space somewhere.
So that was my week - never promised it would be interesting. Let's see what the next one brings.
The Young Farmers' Dinner Dance is on the horizon - better go and look out my dancing shoes.