In the face of further production cuts and ongoing transport difficulties it now appears that this once bi weekly production of guff has now morphed into a monthly affair.
The purchase price however remains the same.
I’ve a cupboard full of pickles. From red cabbage through cornichons to Delia Smith’s runner bean pickle.
The trout season is drawing to a close. Fishing picked up a little in September with a few fish falling to sedges, emergers and daddy long legs. The weed is in decline and has been pulled out in a few places by the reasonable flow which has caused the level to drop. Swallows exited stage left a few weeks ago although Madam and myself did see a few martins as we walked along a stretch of the upper Test in our efforts to prolong life.
It’s a walk we always do in the Autumn as there is a superb spot for picking mushrooms, the location of which, if revealed on here would require the reader to print off this text and eat the evidence.
Our home environs has also experienced a bumper crop of knopper galls.
I’ve also been at all the hedges with the pole trimmer (rechargeable, we're saving the planet here) and at this point could I make my annual case for the future of boundary demarcation to be fences and walls. I was a physical wreck after a week cutting these clipped arboreal leviathans, they seem to have grown more than ever this summer.
Murthly to be precise and the stretch where in 1922 Georgina Ballantine landed what is still the UK record salmon of 64lb. She fished and lived with her father in the little cottage by the river at the end of Caputh bridge. The fish took over two hours to land and was a few inches short of six feet long. A cast of the fish was made and can still be seen in the museum in Perth. After the cast had been taken the fish was presented to Perth hospital where all staff and patients dined on fresh salmon for a few days.
She became quite an angling celebrity, however the captor of the largest salmon ever caught in the UK was denied membership to the Fly Fishers Guild because she was not a man.
It was the 1920's.... nuff said.
Well done Emmeline for all you did, well done.
It has been quite dry in the region for months, however our arrival was marked by eighteen hours of rain, a four foot rise in river level and all manner of rubbish riding down the river.
We drove north with a little trepidation as the petrol crisis (because that’s what it is) kicked in. We had enough to get all the way but would be running on fumes on arrival.
We filled up the following morning before fishing and we were the only car on the forecourt in Dunkeld.
Driving south a few days later we topped up at Tebay.
On reaching the midlands and on into the densely populated south, the signs began to appear. “No fuel at services” .
Our local town has doubled in size in the last twenty years yet the number of petrol stations has been reduced by over a half.
Here’s the Barton Stacey services on "The Highway to the Sun" this morning.
On the same morning The Thunderer reported that people should prepare for a “Nightmare Christmas”
As if people didn’t have enough of a bate to get in about.
At which point I could chuck up a few thousand words on irresponsible reporting by the media (all corners) and its effect on the turn of events in the last five or so years,
but will refrain,
as I have some late broad beans (luz de Ozono I think) to freeze, which I find tremendously soothing.
By the way, we once entered Barton Stacey services on a Saturday morning for a splash and dash of derv, as we were running late for a cricket match.
The Top Gear team were parked up and filming the episode in which the trio customise camper vans and drive them in a haphazard fashion down to the west country.
The film crew were filming (because that’s what film crews do) with James May in his double decker camper van.
Clarkson was not filming but standing mid forecourt among the pumps with a fag on, amiably chatting away to anyone who made an approach.
I didn’t approach as we had a cricket match to get to, plus the fear of the whole shebang being blown sky high when Clarkson stubbed his fag out.