Monday, 25 April 2011

Almost time for the return of the cows!

The cows are almost returning, I've spied a few today when out driving to work. Woo hoo! I like it when the cows come out again, it means the summer is almost here. Almost!
And, talking of summer, I love seeing creels on the pier - out getting ready for a bit of sea faring action. It does make me think of the summer when I see them stacked almost time to go in the water. Lobster and crabs to be carefully hoodwinked by them, yum yum! I'm sorry, I'm a kind hearted creature myself (honest) but I do like my food, as long as its humany handled, from lettuce, to carrots to crabs, we have to treat it with respect then I enjoy it. I'm happy to buy local, humanly well thought out and handled or reared food, Animal or Vegetable. Respect is the key, treating it all kindly - otherwise I'd rather starve.

I'm lucky, I won't starve, the food here is to die for, the best oatcakes, bread, milk, seafood, lamb, beef, cheese (so many!), tatties, fudge, bannocks and a whole manner of other food inbetween. Catering for all tastes from veggie to carnivore - our home grown produce is among the best I've ever tasted. Google Orkney food and you'll be astounded at the quality we have locally. I'm sure you do too - regional food is amazing! However, whilst in Orkney, the cellist's favourite is icecream! And, we have very good ice-cream here - cos we have very happy cows, livng on lovely grass in the summer. Today she cycled to the local village, up a very LARGE hill for an ice-cream (5 miles) with her friend and  I hear it was to die for!  (By the way no one offers me sponsorship - I just love local food and we've heaps here!)
Aside the amazing food - I got a bit off track there about spring, sorry, once I start rabbing about food I'm gone! Anyway, life in the Northern Isles, its more than a bit bonkers at this time of year - spring is sort of a short or peedie 'blink' prior to full on extreme-light-marathon-summer, when it hardly gets dark. However, at the moment we're geting gradually accostomed to it. Once it gets going, daylight here is a bit on the extreme side - tonight for instance it was twilightish at 10.15-10.30 pm- by full summer, it will be a very long light evening for us until almost midnight, then dark for a bit - then full on light again very early in the morning. Dunno how the cockeral will react, loudly I suspect? Anyway - the lambs, who are less noisy, are now frolicking everywhere - a real sign of spring!
Lambing started a while back, the fields are brimming with life, are these rabbit eared sheep? Or Large lugged lambs? Maybe they will grow into them when they are bigger? You can see why the ground cover plant 'lambs lugs' get their name can't you? A well hidden plant reference hidden in text about lambing - go me! Never fail to try eh?
There you go - same ears, different colour and angle aren't they quite cute! The view towards home in the distance. We do have trees here you can see them. And my house is the last house on the right, in the far distance on the horizon or the one beside it , I can't figure it out- funny seeing it from this view.

Or this one, stopped again to take photo fo the view, I do like this view, I can look at the byres (sheds) too. First byre is the garage/bike shed/summer chicken home, second the potting shed, third is a building the chooks are in for the winter and the other one is an old house ruin.  Next time I take that photo, a polytunnel will be at there at the left of our house.......(I can't wait!). This is the official pre-polytunnel picture!! I'm counting down the days - it will happen very soon.
Never noticed that view before, but then again never stopped to take pictures of lambs for a chum before!
More lamby pictures, they seem to be talking about me. 'You're a semi local, why are you acting like a tourist and taking photos of us?' I think thats what I heard anyway........
Or are they just talking to each other?
And, the best bit, as I began to tell you and got confunded by food, lambs and creels. Anyway, I'm starting to see cows again. Hurrah! No, I'm not going mad, our cows go into the cosy sheds for the winter - as the weather is too horrible here from Oct-April/May, sensible creatures. I can't wait to see them all in the fields again - slowly but surely they are coming out of hibernation. For now I'll post pictures of sheep - as pretty soon you'll be sick of cow photos. They will be back in the field over the garden fence in a bit and I can't wait!
 Nothing finer than being in the garden, turning around and finding 30 cows watching you wondering what on earth you're upto. They find mowing quite comical - I'm sure they wonder why on earth we don't just eat the stuff rather than hoover it up with a wierd grass eating hoover. (Very sure cows know about hoovering, well they are indoors all winter, with all that dusty straw - they're bound to know about hoovers, aren't they?)
 I've just figured out why I don't like mowing grass, too much like hoovering, unless I'm on BRB (the very cool mower which I ride for fun, not really to do too grass hoovering just sort of happens when you're riding him!) - which doesn't really smack of proper housework. More like fun really, which is great as I'm allergic to anything not very fun, like housework. I'd rather be in the garden, NOT hoovering but messing about with flowers! Or watching cows in the field over the fence - so hurry up cows where are you?! I'm waitng for your return.


  1. another wonderful fun-filled humourous blog post from you. absolutely delightful! i've been reading about orkney food and i agree with you that the home-grown food there is fantastic! and i am crazy about lambs ... they are so fun and cute.

  2. Well of course cows know about hoovers! I watch Eddy Izzard - are you related by any chance?! Love the lamb's ears, they look like they could take off in the Orkney winds. I imagine the long dark winters mean that you all get a little crazy over the first signs of summer approaching. I love fresh seafood, and good ice cream. You are a good advert for Orkney life. Look forward to seeing the cows. Do you know the Larsen cartoons? I think your cows might be like this...

  3. Hi Fay,
    I agree,mowing is just like hoovering with a view.I'm not too fond of either activity.
    It all looks to be springing into life at your place.
    Cows have such gentle,curious natures,I do love them.The lambies here are enjoying this dry warm(ish) Spring we are getting.

  4. Until there is a silent mower or hoover I will live with long grass and speckled carpets(unless I can bribe someone else to do either job for me).

  5. I can't imagine what it's like to have light nights that late! How do you sleep?

  6. Janet you make me giggle. Eddie is indeed my brother and I.m a fan of those cows:)

  7. Anne in the summer it's difficult. Noise, from birdies, the light argh. We have blackout blinds to go up.

  8. Thecurateswife nice to see you and I wholeheartedly agree!

  9. Julie weathers been mixed here, although it would seem when I need to write, the sun shines!!!!

    Hoovering with a view, perfect comment!! Xx

  10. Jts we are blessed with so much good produce here :) we are so lucky. Lambs are very silly and cute