Sunday, 15 September 2013

Two old country sayings.

Two sticks across and a little bit of moss.

One of my father's old sayings.  It refers to the nest of pigeons - they are such scrappy nest-builders.   The same goes for collared doves too - they really weren't around in my father's day but now they are a real success story, and I can't really understand why.  They nest in the Scot's pines by our farmhouse and their nests are so flimsy and so high up in the trees that come the wind and the eggs (or even the nestlings) land up broken on the grass.  But this year they must have done really well.   In the Spring we had two pairs which we knew were nesting in the trees.   Now there are ten at the bird table each morning - we are of course assuming that six of them must be the offspring of the two pairs.   But whatever the reason, it is good to see such a lovely bird doing so well.

Red sky in the morning a shepherd's warning.

Today is the farmer's fortnightly walking day - an outing he really enjoys because as well as seeing our beautiful Yorkshire Dales he is also walking with friends who are  farmers and they can talk shop.  The weather forecast for today is dreadful - 'The first real storms of Autumn' said the weatherman last night, so we wondered what to expect this morning and whether the walk might be cancelled (they are a pretty hardy lot but don't usually set off if it is bad beforehand).  The sky at 6am was as angry as I have ever seen it; great black clouds and a deep, deep red as the sun came up.   It was very beautiful but it didn't augur a lovely day.  However, it is now eleven o'clock, he has gone, there is still no rain although the wind is strong and he has taken wet weather gear.   I do hope it holds off until later in the day, not just for his walk but also because today is The Great North Run - a half-marathon in Newcastle - which attracts top class runners from around the world, many of whom are running under sponsorship for various charities.

The chicken (corn fed and stuffed with apple, sage and onion stuffing) is in the oven. Once I have ordered my groceries on line after this blog that is me more or less done for a few hours and I can spend an hour with my feet up reading my Ian Rankin - might even get to the end and find out who dunnit.

17 comments:

Dave King said...

That chicken is making my mouth water - and so is the walk!

Willow said...

I hope the weather held out for both of the events to go well.
The farmers walk just sounded so interesting and what a great tradition.

George said...

As one who has spent a great deal of time sailing, we have a similar adage in this part of the world: "Red sky at morning, sailors take warning."

Joanne Noragon said...

It sounds like a cottage sort of day. Sung and quiet.

Heather said...

It has been very blustery here too but didn't rain until the afternoon. I hope the same could be said for the farmers' walk and the Great North Run. I am taking a break from rearranging my workroom - it is a work in progress!
Enjoy your afternoon's reading. I shall read later if I can keep my eyes open long enough.

angryparsnip said...

Although not a great morning for you, the sky sounds exciting.

Your having Autumn and we are still in Summer ! It has been over 100 again but this week in the high 90's. So I hope our autumn will come soon. Our monsoons are just about done.

Your chicken dish sounds wonderful. Something I would love to eat but not now. We are still in summer no turning the oven on.

cheers, parsnip

mrsnesbitt said...

Our gates are shut so we are "In for the night" a saying mum used. I am turning into my mum....sausage and veg with onion gravy for me tonight - chicken curry for Jon xxxx

stuart dunlop said...

Which Ian Rankin are you reading? (I have read them all). Ian was born in the village that my wife came from, and he uses that background in some of his books, so his writing is always very real for me. For dinner tonight, we're having pork chops in mustard sauce with caramelised carrots and fried potatoes, both from the garden. Last night I went a bit crazy and cooked a bouillabaise of chicken with home-made pasta and individual courgette, cream, egg and comte cheese mousses. On Thursday I recreated Ade Edmunson's winning dish from celeb masterchef. It was very good....:)

Hildred said...

We are looking forward to rain tomorrow after this hot summer weather, but I hope the Farmer has a good today for his walk. I am planning to retrieve some plants from my old garden to put in my wonderful new flower bed where there used to be a patch of lawn, so am happy with the prospects of cooler weather.

Pam said...

Only last night I emailed family travelling in England, saying no doubt Autumn would be lovely - I was thinking of your huge trees and the leaves changing colour, admittedly with the sun behind them! I was premature celebrating Spring here in South Australia - the rain and whipping winds have come back with a vengeance and I too am putting off my walks.

Pondside said...

I'm another who finds the thought of roasting chicken on a blustery day to be the stuff of dreams. Stay warm, enjoy your dinner and your book!

Cloudia said...

Thank You for sharing your heavenly country day with us, dear

ALOHA means love;

from Honolulu
Comfort Spiral
=^..^= <3
> < } } ( ° >

MorningAJ said...

I love Ian Rankin books. I think I've read everything he's published.

I didn't know about the pigeon nests. That's a new saying for me.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Interesting Stuart that you recreated Ad Edmonson's recipes - we watched the final and were so glad that he won - his recipes were by far the most imaginative. Do you agree?
Wish you could all have shared the hen with sage, apple and onion - it was jolly good I have to say.
Thanks for calling in.

Crafty Green Poet said...

collared doves nest somewhere near our flat too, I've no idea where, but it's lovely to see them flitting around.

Very mixed weather here at the moment, high winds

susie @ persimmon moon cottage said...

I just found your site today. I had never heard the saying about the twigs and moss nest, but it is certainly true for the mourning doves that we have here in Missouri, too. This past spring they built such a pitiful nest in our spruce, that I could see an egg through the twig nest. So much so, that I thought sure it would fall through in a strong wind. It didn't. I believe it is the same family of birds that build in the spruce each year, generation after generation.

Here in the Midwest, USA, nowhere near any seas, I have always heard the saying "Red sky at morning, sailors take warning." I imagine that the saying must have come along with sea faring ancestors that settled here.

Your roast chicken with all of fixings sounds delicious. You have me craving roast chicken now---and cooler weather.

I enjoyed seeing pictures of the beautiful area where you live and am signing on as your newest follower after posting this!

Reader Wil said...

It's funny to read those old sayings. They always apply to the weather or nature. We have saying for a red sky in the morning which I shall translate after I have written it down in Dutch. It says in Dutch:
"Morgen rood
water in de sloot"
which means:
"Morning red
water in the ditch"