The last mow

Do I always write that? Eleven years in a row. Is it the last mow? It’s November for heaven’s sake. This is meant to be the slowing down season.

But having just come in from picking yet more raspberries, some coriander, a huge armful of spinach and the last (!) tomatoes…. I’m having my doubts.

It’s mild. Too mild. Well, we had 8cm of snow last week. And today (pause while I fail dismally to convert to metric) almost two inches of rain. On top of last weeks six and a half. Goodness it’s a lot.

Soaking mild weather. But being wet it meant I had to fuss about indoors trying to get the hang of this new computer. And then get soaked when I insisted on moving wood for the winter supply and getting drenched.

This is our lovely freebie oak and chestnut cut from the trees that were too close to the council’s road this February. All cut now and ready to stack and dry in the barn.

Still, one has to earn one’s beer. And put all those biscuits dunked in too much tea behind.

So. Mow. There is the low maintenance variety:

And the high.

Both horses escaped two days ago and I spent a merry time chasing them all the way about the farm’s lushest parts. I finally managed to throw a bridle over Ulysse way down near the old vineyard. Cheeky bugger. He was having a marvellous time.

But he was soon led back to prison (upper terrace) and Jean Daniel has decided they can stay there until fence repairs are effected on his part of the mountain.

They are rather lovely companions: the snickering whinny when you approach with a loaf of stale bread and a bucket of chestnuts. You could wish humans were that thrilled with such paltry fare.


Anyway, enough of distant shots of horses. The mowing is done. The machine put away until (hopefully!) spring.

Now back to my list. There is weeding on the orchard bank that is becoming alarmingly urgent. With all this rain the grasses have flopped and need to be trimmed back so I can find all the other plants struggling underneath.

This shot of shame ought to inspire me to get on. I’ll just have a word with the weather forecast first.