31 May 2020

More Cycling


This morning we cycled 30 kms – the distances are getting longer.  We rode out through the quiet country lanes of Snitterby and Waddingham and then crossed the A15 and climbed up towards Kirton.  Again, perfect riding conditions, although the horizon was a little hazy.  We were up high by Lincolnshire standards and could see the Wolds in the distance.  From Kirton we rode down towards Redbourne and stopped by the churchyard for a brief rest and a drink.  Redbourne is a pretty little village with a stream running through it; today there was a horse grazing on the green with a gypsy caravan parked nearby.

gypsy caravan


From Redbourne we cycled back to Waddingham and returned towards home via Atterby Carr.  It is fairly level terrain here so I was cruising along at a fair old pace.  Suddenly  two racing cyclists swept by and left me standing.  Discouraging or what!   But as Paul pointed out, they were half our age.

Tomorrow Paul has another new route planned.  Oh joy!

29 May 2020

X Marks the Spot

Summertime and the living is easy!  We are enjoying this beautiful weather (although Paul would like rain for his garden).    This morning we went for a 25 km bike ride and the cycling conditions were perfect.  We were even entertained by the Red Arrows painting pictures in the sky overhead.

Cycling has been a bit difficult because of my painful knee that I twisted after my pathetic attempt at decorating some weeks ago.  Earlier this week I was slouching in front of the television and I gave a lazy stretch.  There was an ominous crack, loud enough to frighten Rick who shot under the table.  “That was your knee,” Paul said, “are you okay?”  I moved my leg gingerly and said “Yes, it still works.”  Funnily enough my knee has felt a lot better since, I think something may have clicked back into place.

We have been sitting outside on the terrace a great deal and I cannot resist the temptation to have a glass of something long and cool in my hand.  Yesterday I decided to use up some coconut milk and made myself a pina colada.  Except I didn’t have a pineapple so I used a banana and I didn’t have any rum so I used vodka.  And I didn’t have an umbrella to stick in the glass either.  So it wasn’t exactly a pina colada but it tasted okay!

Our dentist rang earlier today to postpone our next week scheduled appointments.  The week just gets better and better.

25 May 2020


After three days of buffeting gales the wind has finally dropped and we awoke to blue skies and
gorgeous sunshine.  We went out for an early bike ride and have then spent the rest of the day in the garden.  Some of the trees and shrubs look a little battered and bruised but it is amazing how resilient some of the plants are.  The foxgloves we planted back in the autumn managed to avoid being knocked over.

We had garlic scapes for lunch.  Paul is growing elephant garlic in his potager and before the bulbs are fully mature and ready to be harvested they produce long, curly scapes which hold the flower head of the plant.  They are delicious sautéed in oil and butter and have a very delicate garlic taste.

garlic scapes

Our first broad beans will be ready for harvesting soon, I like to eat them young and tender.  We are watching carefully to check they don’t become covered in black fly.  Then I shall be looking forward to picking the first French beans of the season.  I love this time of year!

I like to scatter chive flowers over my salads

23 May 2020

Lupins and Lunch

lupins, peony and rose
Some more casualties from the garden - this wind is incessant!  The poor lupin heads are quite twisted and it’s difficult to arrange them in the vase.  It’s not particularly cold outside and we have been throwing balls for Rick to chase and retrieve.  By the time we come back indoors I feel quite battered by the wind.

Paul is very concerned about his vegetable plot but is consoled by the fact that we may be picking our first cucumber from the greenhouse in a day or two.

I’m having a lazy day.  Instead of ironing a pile of laundry I folded it and put it away in the airing cupboard.  This is really not like me at all.  I have just picked a large amount of parsley from the garden and made some pesto which I have added to a tin of mixed beans for lunch.  It will be a proper feast because Paul has made bread and there is home made pate, cheese and a fruity red wine too.

Apart from mopping the kitchen floor I have no plans for the rest of the day.  I wonder what mischief I can find.

22 May 2020

Windy Weather

There is a hurricane blowing outside!  The weathermen describe it as merely an unseasonable wind but it is knocking our garden for six.  Paul has been outside trying to tie up the lupins that have been flattened.  He has had to move the raspberry canes into the garage in an attempt to save them.  The yellow roses that were in full bloom have had their petals scattered all over the patio, I picked up one bloom that had been totally decapitated and brought it indoors.  This wind is likely to continue for the next three days, getting even stronger tomorrow, so there will no doubt be some damage to the garden.

Earlier in the week it felt like summer had truly arrived.  We pottered around the garden, ate lunch outside and Rick ran around like a small child chasing his tennis balls.  Yesterday we drove to our local garden centre that had recently re-opened.  It was the first time I had been out in the car for over 9 weeks.  We went early to avoid any crowds and in actual fact there were only a couple of other people there so we were able to wander about quite freely.  I bought a couple of lavender plants, some bedding dahlias, antirrhinums and another ornamental grass for the patio.

In the afternoon Paul dug up an old hydrangea bush that had become too big and was not producing any blooms and replanted a Hebe in its place.  I don’t like getting rid of plants but sometimes you have to be a bit ruthless. 

I just want this wind to stop now so we can resume our cycling and enjoy the garden once more.