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May 15 it was an accident waiting to happen



I sit with a sting resembling a goitre on my neck that wobbles like a cockerel’s wattles, after capturing Clyde on camera doing the rounds of his bee hives this sunny morning. “lol” texted Clyde and John did just that. It has been one of those weeks and Clyde certainly didn’t pass any of his luck onto me when he found five four-leaved clovers. Mechanically it lived up to the maxim everything goes in threes. Firstly a badly cracked windscreen on the “new” to us anyway pickup caused by an English partridge that I think lived to tell the tale. £50 excess. A couple of days later, it was Tuesday, rain from dawn til dusk and some more. It was an accident waiting to happen. There is a breed of white van man who will drive into the yard bat-out-of-hell-style, not caring to use a parking space, then abandon his vehicle anywhere, blocking you in, what the hell as long as it saves him a nano second. The yard was chocker with a-to and froing forklift unloading the rig, tractors and farm vehicles. I was just reversing a pickup truck with tail gate down out the way, when I met some resistance. He tried his horn, but it wasn’t functional, I couldn’t quite distinguish my tail-gate damage from a previous incident the week before. He went away chuntering. Thursday, I think my Friday the thirteenth came a day early, I wasn’t alright on so many levels. I was heading back after harvesting herbs and the pickup I was driving started acting very strangely, it had been wet, 12.5 mm. wet, but not enough to account for this, I thought maybe it was the differential, that 4 wheel drive wasn’t engaging. When I got out to investigate the two front wheels were pointing in different directions in a pigeon-toed manner, a steering arm had apparently gone. My turn to abandon in the gate way. “John!”
The cutting pace in the lettuce field heats up, seven pallets yesterday, if the temperature doesn’t. Planting is non-stop, leeks that needed a haircut, kohl rabi, spring onions, two batches of fennel that were too leggy to go through the Ferrari planter and created a lot of gapping up, an unpopular job if ever there was one. All I am left to look out the kitchen window at this weekend are 15K celeriac plants, so we did a good job, guys. It took my enquiry – “Where is the basil” – to learn that the plant raiser hadn’t even sown it. Empty tunnels are expensive, we couldn’t wait four weeks, and it now accommodates fennel. It is yet to be figured where the basil will go when it does finally arrive.
Clyde asked our irrigation specialist if they could just demonstrate starting up the new electric pump and was a bit put out with the reply “I should write an idiot’s guide to starting an electric pump”. As it so happened, the two of them were here two afternoons and a part morning doing just that! A case perhaps of the kettle calling the pot black or something like that.
Pam, Clyde, Dicken – Andriej, Schumacher, Monika & Alma, her mother, who joined the Strawberry Fields team this week. She says it is just like being home, I only hope that is a good thing.


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