Wednesday, 25 May 2011

What price a suntan?

   I have never really prayed for rain, it usually turns up eventually and then continues for too long. To be honest I have never really prayed for anything except possibly for the health of my family. But rain is needed now, here in France, badly needed. We have had nothing since February, nearly four months ago. Crops are failing, grassland burned up, hay bales scarce. My brother on the farm in UK is already rejoicing at the recompense of a poor harvest across France forcing the price of wheat up yet further. Then my colleague calls me, saying corn is so expensive he can’t afford to feed his animals any more and is selling pedigree bulls off as youngsters rather than feeding them through to fruition. The local guy around here who cuts lawns for a living is thinking of packing up because he has no work. I have even given up growing vegetables this year, except some tomatoes, as the cost of watering them twice a day becomes prohibitive, not to mention the time it takes.
   It’s an ill wind that blows nobody any good and there will be an excess of fruit on trees this year but there is only so much of that we can process. The lambs seem to be doing well, they don’t really like a wet spring but I am struggling at present to shear the ewes as I cannot catch two of the wilder ones and am unable to build a coral to herd them into as I cannot get posts in the ground. I will have to soon, I know, but I keep putting it off at least until I get some help. We are fortunate we only have 9 sheep on three or four acres, so they still have enough feed; for now.
   With family problems in UK at the moment, I need to spend more time there than usual and have to rely on others to water plants when we are away, which is every other week. When I am here, to be honest it is too hot for hard labour and some of this years building projects will have to wait another year.
   Am I complaining, no not really, I have got a tan and I love the sun, after all that is why we came here. I am enjoying just filling my time writing, more and more words keep flowing as I embark on my 8th novel in as many months.
My only concern is we seen to have evolved into a world of extremes when it comes to weather patterns and in the long run there is going to be a price to pay, by someone, somewhere, sometime.

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