This October the 2 folk, the dog and the tractor were discombobulated by the wind.

September heralded the start of spring, we knew where we were headed, jobs to be done and a clear upward plane of activity. Then October came and picked us up and dumped us on our heads.

October is one hodge podge of weather.  It confuses everybody, plants and animals.  A week of warm weather followed by cold snaps that are so hard you’d think that snow was due (as it did in 2012). Persistent winds, as hinted at by the numerous windmill farms in our area, take on a more howling demeanor. Perhaps it’s because the trees and house are still growing that we feel so exposed. I wonder if passing traffic look at our place the same way I look at a remote house or a cliff-edged monastery and marvel at the resilience and persistence to build in such a remote and exposed place. Or maybe they just think we are mad.

Without the shelter of an established garden, walled courtyards and windbreaks our place gets buffetted heavily by the winds. So we adapt to the persistence of the wind. Is the ability to continually adapt a method of resilience? Being out here on an exposed site does remind you of what you can bear, even find happiness in, survive and not feel so fragile.  The gale force winds unsettle me, but as time goes on I almost miss it if I can’t feel a breeze of some sort.

Facing the wind is the only way to keep the hair out of a girl’s eyes

Self-build note for folk designing their house – windows/glazing are a tricky component.  You need the ability to adjust the window/door in response to the weather.  You need to really understand how wind will move through the house (and heat and cold).  From our experience prevailing winds do work to cool a place down however, they can also take out papers and lamps on tables, blow out gas cooktops and move outdoor furniture not concreted down. So I am hanging onto the hope, that once I have built my outdoor space, my indoor space will not feel so exposed.

The kitchen garden is powering along sans sheep and hares. The late planted broadbeans have sprouted, and the beans and peas are thriving.  This year the orchard apple trees actually have leaves and flowers on – in addition to removing the sheep we have been diligently watering them and voila! The sticks have sprouted into life.  Bless the hardy beauties. Gooseberry (English) and blueberry bushes were planted into the orchard.  We’d entertained the idea of putting a chook run in the orchard but now the berries are in this won’t be happening.  Berries have roots close to the soil surface so don’t take kindly to the efficient scratchings of busy chooks. Finally, the strawberries have multiplied and are flowering well given they are in pots, I just love berry season.

Book List October

Book list Oct 2018
Clearly the kitchen garden is dominating my mind

Not sure why my reading dropped off this month – perhaps it operates like food – the warmer weather shifts the appetite.  I suspect it’s more obvious, sunshine gets me outside so I don’t read as much OR I’m just so pre-occupied in keeping things alive and upright from the wind!

I have been busy on my @longview_garlic instagram account.  Probably more learning how to work it rather than any amazing creative photo story at this stage.  Instagram takes a lot of reading time.  I’m genuinely inspired by the work people create and the stories of building authentic lives for themselves, their families and communities.  I essentially get to read several short stories a day and craft a meaningful response.  Ha! It sounds suspiciously like English writing homework….only way more relevant.

Trees – Number 2 on the 100goodthings list

Enough words, let me just post some pics of wind and trees, and weather confusion.

Final word

Life is like a wooden table.

One mark looks like a disaster; a huge number of scratches lends the whole an almost pleasing patina.

School of Life, cards on resilience 2018


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