Today it is bitterly cold. There is a sharp South-Easterly wind blowing and although the sun is constantly trying to break through it is not having a lot of success. After yesterday's lovely warm sun, when it was a pleasure to get into the sheltered front garden, any thoughts of going out there today have gone out of the window.
The farmer is very busy trying to get as much slurry from our neighbour's slurry tank on to the fields before the weather breaks on Wednesday and rain is forecast again. Although the fields have dried up nicely there is still a lot of underlying water and as soon as there is any rain it is not sensible to get on the fields with a heavy tractor. Also, of course, it is handy if the rain comes and washes the slurry into the ground well.
If there is anyone out there who is not sure what slurry is, I will explain. All dairy farmers now have to have a slurry tank in which to collect their slurry. Of course the cows make a mess, which is pretty liquid in the first place (as anyone who has ever trod in a cow pat will tell you) but this is also mixed as it goes into the tank with the hosing down water as the milking parlour is swilled out after the cattle have been in.
These slurry tanks are large and can be quite dangerous, so should always be treated with caution. Not so long ago there was a terrible accident when several members of the same family died after being overcome with fumes after one of them went in to the slurry to try to rescue a pet dog. Like so many things on the farm, there is danger lurking if one puts a foot wrong.
With the wind in the direction it is, the smell of the slurry fields should be drifting away from the house, although I don't find it all that bad a smell - it is a necessary farming smell.
We have quite a lot of things on this week and as the farmer has to ferry me about (I cannot drive at the moment) his days are going to be rather disrupted. So he is dashing from pillar to post (wonder where that expression came from).
This Blinding Absence of Light by Tahar Ben Jelloun
42 minutes ago