Is Bertha calling in on us, or isn't she? Seems it depends which newspaper one reads (although the news is so dire in them all at the moment that you can be excused from reading any). But the general theme is that Big Bertha, the Caribbean Hurricane recently downgraded to a 'mere' Tropical Storm, might conceivably 'clip'the South East of England some time on Sunday (can somebody reading this explain why, when Bertha is approaching from the Atlantic, she will clip the South East corner rather than the South West).
And so we are promised - rainfall of more than 2 inches, coastal gusts of more than 60mph, and heavy Spring tides (in August?)
Isn't it always the same here in the UK? Just as the plums, apples and pears are ripe, a gale arrives to blow the fruit off the trees. Just as the Combine Harvesters get their pyjamas off ready to tackle this year's crop of wheat up here in the North, wet weather arrives to postpone the day. And just as the farmer sharpens his new grass cutter to cut second-crop silage, it looks as though that will be postponed too.
Well, I for one will show my contempt for the weather. I shall have a bowl of English strawberries, with English cream, for my tea and I shall sit this evening and eat the Victoria Plums I bought on the market this morning, when I shamelessly squeezed every one and picked out a dozen which were all fully ripe and ready to ooze their juice straight into my open mouth.
Crops seem to have been good everywhere,but runner beans in our garden, notoriously late arriving up here, are just beginning to grow and are now to be battered by strong winds if the forecast is to be believed (that is all they need), and the single apple which has grown on our apple tree and which we have been watching with interest as it visibly swelled, has outgrown its strength and split from top to bottom. Well you can't win 'em all - our sweet peas are lovely (even if we can't eat them).