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There is a well known phrase! "An Englishman's Home Is His Castle" Of course it has some meaning but in my case it's taken literally! I woke this morning to find a moat around our home, no! it's not to stop an invading army, nor was it an intentional feature of our home, more a torrential overnight downpour and deep foundations around our property. It's gone well beyond a joke, I must say! But the sun will come out, oh yes! I hope?


Flaming June is another phrase but the first week of the month shows little promise. I've often joked about building a boat, perhaps an ark instead of a fixed abode and although a joke at the time, it's becoming more of a realitly! The weeds are climbing and creeping around the yard and pretty soon we'll be engorged in a jungle! My hubby is forbidden to touch any of the flora since our nightmare episode on vacation last year where we had to cut our holiday in Crete short on account of my hubby turning into Freddie Kruger after doing a spot of cultivating prior to departure. He's allergic to blackberry bushes and Himalayan Balsam of which we have plenty -- hence the goats who are eating to the point of bursting but are sick of the sight of blackberry canes.


It will be up to me and my daughter to weed the yard this year but a funny thing happens when I mention the task out loud, my daughter mysteriously disappears and I'm left with a pair of clippers and a relunctant heart. I began pulling up the Balsam yesterday. It comes up with relative ease but I'm sure as I pull one, another shoots up beside it. They're like a plague!


We have stinging nettles too! My attempt in the kitchen to make the plant edible failed. I made soup and fritters from an old entry in my equally old cookbook and although they were willing to try the nettles, they quickly shook their heads in disappointment as I took the fritters out of the pan. I swear they looked like owl droppings -- the soup was dark green. I have to admit that the whole dish looked more like a potion than a delicacy!


"You'd have to eat it if you were stranded on a remote island and starving," I said.


"But Mum we're not, never shall be and even if we were I still wouldn't eat it," she snapped with contempt!


Of course she's right! We're not ever likely to be stranded on a remote island but actually my home comes pretty close to being an island itself this morning. They say it's global warming, so why is it that I'm sat here with one functional finger, the rest are frozen and wearing my winter clothing. I'm contemplating making a fire it feels so cold indoors. It doesn't help that we have no wall, however warm it may be outdoors! The draught still works its way through and being such damp weather it feels rather unpleasent sitting here. I worked out long ago that I must be very tolerant, not to mention patient! How many people would put up with living in a half-finished house for so long. If I was normal and not suffering from a condition, it would still be hard.


That's it! decision made. I've shivered long enough. Where's the wood for the fire? June or no June it's cold, I'm cold and that means only one thing in my book, to make a fire!


It's 1pm and I've got a warm fire leaping up the chimney. My hubby came home for lunch, frowned, moaned and then commented it was too warm in the living room. He began to peel off layers huffing and puffing like I'd set him on fire. As for me well, I was just comfortable and a whole lot warmer than earlier. My fingers had returned with a healthy glow and no matter how much my husband moaned, I wasn't about to extinguish my lovely warm flames, he'd be back at work shortly and then I'd be putting on more fuel for an afternoon in total warmth and relaxation.


Looking out of my window I can see dark skies and the haunting howl of a brisk easterly wind! The weeds are dancing and the trees are bent to the left. The chickens are fluffed up like little footballs under the wagon. The geese are sheltering under the conifer tree. This picture I'm painting is one of early winter rather than early summer! No wonder we Brits head for the Mediteranean sun. As far as weather goes Britain has all the grot. The weather man on TV is on antidepressants I'm sure, delivering such bad news on a daily basis. The usual grim face and a map with more arrows than Robin Hood's quiver! He delivers!


"Not good again I'm afraid, a low depression creeping in from the north bringing with it torrential downpours and a strong easterly wind. Outlook unsettled but should become brighter by the end of the week. Temperatures below normal a mere 12 degrees celcius that's about 52 degrees fahrenheit but will feel cooler in the wind."


This is June for goodness sake! And with that I put on another log!

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