Our dear old sheep-dog, Tip, died suddenly yesterday afternoon. He had been for his usual walk with the farmer and Tess in the morning, come back and eaten his breakfast and seemed fine, although he has been a bit arthritic in recent months. When the farmer went in to take him for the evening walk he had died - presumably from either a heart attack or a stroke. This morning he has been buried in our row of loved pets, alongside my pug, Algy, and my Pointer, Oscar - right outside the kitchen window and under the apple tree. Rest in peace dear old Tip.
Now to the subject of today's blog - Money. Is there any other topic in the world? Does the whole world revolve around it? I fear it does. I pick three stories out of today's Times - three stories which I find absolutely appalling - I despair of the way things are going.
First the price of milk and how here in the UK the big Supermarkets have decided to have a price war and to target milk as a Loss Leader, because every customer buys milk. Four pints of milk for £1 - or 25p a pint. No loss to the farmers say the other supermarkets, who of course have all followed suit. For how long I wonder?
It is no coincidence that Dairy Farmers are going out of business rapidly - the reason is that they cannot make it pay, they are not given enough for their milk. This devalues the product in the eyes of the customers and there will be a knock on effect on farmers - mark my words.
Secondly - a headline in the Times financial pages which literally made me gasp. "What the Crimea Crisis means for your Portfolio".
Has anyone thought to ask what the Crimea crisis, and the crisis in the Ukraine means to the people of the area - civil unrest and uncertainty, bloodshed, people in Ukraine feeling Crimean and vice versa. I would guess that the Portfolios of folk in the West is the least of the worries of the ordinary man and woman in the street.
Thirdly - are you a coffee drinker or a tea drinker? If the answer to that is a coffee drinker then it looks as though it is going to cost you far more in the near future because much of the coffee crop in Brazil, where most of the world's finest Arabica coffee comes from, has failed because of the weather. Will the industry absorb the cost - of course not - the customer will pay more for the coffee (and I understand sugar too) - and I will bet you a pound to a penny that the producer doesn't suffer much - it will be the pickers over there and the buyers over here who will pay the price
End of rant for today.
Cheer up and look at my two Spring pictures for today - I am sure that, like me, you need a bit of cheering up. The first celandines on the side of the beck and the first Tete a tete daffodils outside the back door. Spring.