When we were in England we worked six days a week with Sunday’s being our day of rest. This day was spent, or rather the morning only, doing all the jobs that most people do over the whole weekend. Lunchtime became a ritual that found me making something small and absolutely delicious accompanied by a rather good bottle of crisp white. It was the one of the highlights of our week and since our move to Australia we have maintained this tradition. As I have now taken on the full time role of Director of Domestic Services, Sunday morning is not so frantic and I have more time to prepare for the weekly feast. This week it was braised Globe Artichokes, Carrot, Orange and Walnut Salad and Roasted Peppers served with a well known Australian Sav Blanc which comes in a friendly litre bottle (Yippee). Later, rather merrily, we Face-timed a cousin in New Zealand and passed a most convivial hour talking about all things unmentionable…with much laughter as indeed we also had with a much missed mate on Face-Time the previous night. FaceTime and Skype really make it feel as though I’m not apart from family and friends and I can’t believe it is five months since we left the UK.
We’ve had a good and busy fortnight since my last blog. It started off with lamb marking which is a pretty full on exercise. All the ewes and their lambs were rounded up with their lambs being drafted off into a separate pen.
The lambs waited for the sheep men to individually vaccinate, de-tail them all and de-nut the boys . The ewes waited rather impatiently outside the pens baa-ing for their little darlings to be released from the clutches of the sheep men and I was given the job of making sure that none of the lambs escaped the pen. In amongst the hundreds of lambs there was one black one.
The job of lamb marking took four days and on the last day I was called over to the workshop to find the sheep men, Mr Farmer 3 and the Kiwi enjoying a bevy or three. “We’ve got a present for you in the back of the ute” they said. I looked over towards the ute and there, with her head poking out of a sack was the cutest lamb I’ve ever seen. “She’s got a broken leg and only walks on three legs but she was too pretty to dong on the head. We thought Sprocket needed a mate and we’ve called her Tripod”. Tripod has settled in well and Sprocket bosses her around like he’s in charge. Her leg is healing up too, and they’re both growing like mushrooms.
Back in the caravan I’m struggling with the black velour dinette. With the days beginning to get longer, our girls are beginning to moult. My poor new Dustbuster vacuum cleaner is working overtime trying to keep the synthetic sticky fabric looking black rather than off-blonde.
Lately Mrs Farmer 3 has been encouraging me into joining her at a weekly exercise class. Rather more enthusiastically than for my own good, I for the first time in my life donned Lycra. I pitched up with Mrs Farmer 3 to a village hall filled with rather fit looking ladies mostly a bit younger than me but with a reassuring smattering of pommie accents and I bounced around the hall for an hour of physical jerks. Well…. I have to say I was fitter than I thought I was and kept up quite well in fact it was quite fun and I’ve booked myself in for another session – yikes!
Other than the physical jerk classes I try to ensure that I do partake of some form of daily exercise and the black velour dinette trashers (golden retrievers) give me a reason to get out there and strut my stuff. Our daily walks take us over the surrounding farmland which is looking absolutely incredible. There are fields of yellow canola for miles and the cereal crops are now at waist height and oh so unbelievably green.
Both our golden girls are also looking particularly good at the moment as tinned sardines from Aldi have been introduced into their diet making their coats soft and shiny. Their healthy diet keeps their movements regular and here’s a photo of them in synchro poo on one of the barley paddocks. I’m not sure I’ll ever drink Aussie Carlton beer again!
Yes, we have Aldi in Perth! Wow! I’ve missed having to have a penny for the trolley and the demands of packing ones own bags. But Aldi is still 1.5 hours away leaving me having to be super organised in the domestic department. On the way home I pass through the town of Bindoon which is largest citrus growing town in Australia. Stalls selling oranges and mandarines at bargain prices line the road and I’ve never tasted anything like orange orbs of deliciousness. We’re just asked to post our money in the honesty box and take our pick. Orange trees stretch as far as the eye can see around Bindoon and I swear I’ll look as if I’ve got an orange fake tan soon with the amount I’m eating.
Tomorrow sees us getting on a flight from Perth to Melbourne and then a drive onto Dunkeld to go and look at more farms to find the Promised Land. It’ll be interesting to see what has come onto the market since we were last there and also to feel what a real Australian winter feels like. The winter in WA has been kind and the wild flowers of spring are just beginning where we are.
I have a question. What does one do with oneself after the Olympics are over? I’ve been glued to the box for the past fortnight. I watched Mo Farrah do the Mo-Bot after winning the 5000m and felt chuffed that the Brits have done so well. However we had a bit of a test of loyalties when the All Blacks thrashed the Wallabies at Rugby last night.