Last night I was all set to write up my notes; but the storm had other plans. So instead of writing, I sat with a book in front of our huge picture window and enjoyed the lightning show.

Candles and book and a whisky. It wasn’t a bad combination at all.

But this unsettled weather does throw out plans.   This morning it is damp and the ground is wet from overnight rain.   But I think I can still get some heavy duty strimming done.

But news.   This is the view from the roof of the guesthouse. Dario came by to start the repairs to one side of our other home.   We lifted some tiles to check the condition underneath. And found the woodwork in good condition (phew) but amazingly, not much protection below the double tiles on top.   So any crack in the tiles (and there are lots) means the water just flows down.

So this is a timely job.   My job is more low level than Dario’s. I just stand on the ladder and hand down or up tiles.   I have an enormous task today of stock piling all the new tiles that we stocked at the far end of the property five years ago. I think I will use the car boot for that job. It won’t be fun.

And the resident pine marten who lives on the other side of roof is not going to enjoy the disturbance either. I must try and get the night vision camera up to see where he gets in. He’s a crafty chap.

But the afternoon work was more down to earth. Mowing.   I think you have a surfeit of images of my lovely mowing style. But the curves are so much fun that I can’t resist.

It seems to go much faster now: I can get the main lawn, the approaches, the track, the orchard and even the first terrace below the house done in about three hours now.

And then pootering all the way up the road at the top of the property to do the walnut path.   I could do a short cut and walk through the courtyard. But dragging a heavy lawn mower over gravel is a bit like dragging a dead horse over a shingle beach.

The grass cuttings are doing a great job as a mulch. I have weeded and mulched under the apple tree right on the edge of our lawn.   This wet season is heavenly for our fruit trees. Such growth. I suspect they have grown more in the past six months than in the past three years.

The rest of the mulch went directly under the large and almost ripe jostaberry shrubs; and then I bagged up the groaning sacks of grass cuttings from the first terrace and drove them all the way up to the top vegetable garden to top up the mulch there.

I know it’s cheating to drive; but wheelbarrowing uphill is tiring after hours of mowing.   And sneezing.

I retreated indoors to up my dose and change the hankie. And hat. It was warming up and storms looked like they were brewing in the west.

I have bought some new lino to cover the large staging tables in the potting shed. I had hoped to get the same pattern as the ones we have in the guest house and one one part of my tables. But the style was discontinued, so I had to try something approaching the pattern.   But really, I don’t think the plants will care what they are sitting on.

And the main thing is that it looks so much neater. And being lino, water will just drop off. Artur wasn’t impressed.   But that is probably because I decided to clean his dolls house at the same time.

All the cashmere jumpers needed a good shaking out and bits of dirt and mess were sent outside.   He won’t settle down into any of his boxes just yet. He likes to make sure I am settled too.   And right now most of the plants are still in the calabert.

I try to bring a tray or three into the potting shed each time I pass. But I suspect I will need to spend a bit of time today getting everything into the brilliant light of the shed. And warmth.

Oh, I almost forgot. One of the perks of mowing: almost but not quite ripe cherries on a lot of the trees.

Another season opening moment.   I am disappointed that we seem to have very few black cherries from the four or five trees dedicated to that juicier crop.   But I’m not alone. M. Orisette at the market told me that they lost their crop of the larger black ones too.

And I suspect it is going to be a good long season.   These ones to the left are the wild ones. But the other varieties are weeks and weeks off ripe.

Enough fruit gazing, on with the strimming.