Tip-toeing, tapestry and The Law

  The Ranch: It's me and the trees. I walk through the park and they are putting on their annual autumn fashion show, swaying, strutting in rustic hues and drifting down redundant pastel leaves to provide next year's soil. They're not bothered about shutting down [...]

2020-10-19T09:53:25+01:004:49 pm|6 Comments

Medicine and Rock & Roll

  The Ranch: Once again, the weather catches me out. I'm all psyched up for settling into my curmudgeonly Autumn and Winter in The North mode - rain, greyness, drizzle, more rain, intermittent grumpiness, the kitchen warm and toasty with the wood burner, wood stacked naughtily [...]

2020-10-12T08:48:56+01:004:50 pm|2 Comments

The Common Ground project

  Birthday to birthday: I thought that the 21st of Sept was going to be our last warm sunny day of the year so I relished every moment of it, basking in the sun as much as possible whilst pottering semi-gormlessly on the farmlet. I [...]

2020-10-04T16:44:31+01:004:01 pm|1 Comment

How to start a revolution with just six people

A perfect sunny day: Monday (the 21st of Sept) was a perfect Indian summer day. It started cool and crystal blue and became warm and sunny. A gentle breeze drifted off the first pale autumn leaves from the birch, like slow confetti. I was on [...]

2020-09-28T19:28:49+01:0011:31 am|11 Comments

Ergot of rye, blues and Rock & Roll.

  Ranch: The mild, muggy, rainy, northern summery weather is breaking into autumnal gales and horizontal rain and the harvest is bountiful.  All the potatoes are in storage in the barn (between layers of straw in a rat-proof mesh cage). Despite a poor apple harvest, [...]

2020-08-29T19:39:16+01:0010:52 am|0 Comments

Sick of being normal? I failed my A-levels

  Ranch: A spell of sultry, clinging, steamy heat punctuates an otherwise mediocre summer. Hot, hot, sleepily hot. Then come the night storms. Millisecond flashes of illuminating lightning, deep rumbling thunder and lashing torrential rain bringing cool to the clinging mugginess. I see it all. [...]

2020-08-27T10:52:54+01:0012:35 pm|3 Comments

Common ground and the House of Turds.

  Wheels: Northwards! Along the bypass. Past the college. Past the toll-house. Past the tower on the hill on the right. We spot one of the buzzards hovering in the valley to the left. Past the caravan park and onward along the less trod winding [...]

2020-09-28T10:15:05+01:0010:54 am|0 Comments

Kick out the jams

  A fortnight of rain and drizzle gives way to a promising weekend with warm weather forecast. I always forget what the weather is really like round here in the north-west of England. It rains then it rains some more then it drizzles then it [...]

2020-08-02T10:55:43+01:0011:33 am|5 Comments

Farter’s day

  The Ranch - is a routine of comfort in a sea of madness and rising darkness. Planting; weeding; tidying; concrete mixing; building irrigation systems; finishing the greenhouse and so on are comfort for the soul. Proper rain is a redemption and everything is growing [...]

2020-08-02T11:00:15+01:005:48 pm|7 Comments