It has been a seriously horrible day of endless rain and strong cold winds...thoroughly unpleasant altogether. Can't do cold wind, so I have to scuttle about outside with a scarf wrapped firmly round my mouth, then I dribble and the fabric goes all soggy. And my cats keep eating when it's cold...sitting there by the garden fence yowling as though they've not been fed for a week.
Actually, they aren't catching much in the way of wild animals recently...the tunnel used to be littered with the remains of small furry and feathered creatures minus their heads...the most awful killing spree they had was during the bad winter of a couple of years ago, when they killed a Dipper...one of a pair who nested at the side of the river...and a young Partridge. They'd laid them out neatly side by side along with Sparrows and a couple of Wrens and I scolded them from here to there while they washed their paws and feigned total indifference.
Himself set all the mousetraps last night and didn't catch a single mouse...
John mentioned Barn Owls and that reminded me of the Tawny Owls we once kept...they were both rescues and lived in an aviary outside where they sat on their branches and ripped dead day old chicks to bits...you can buy them frozen in a packet. Not Owls, dead day old chicks...
I took them both to Luke's school one day for the children to see...and demonstrated the way captive Owls are weighed...you just turn them over onto their backs and that is where they stay...they don't attempt to move. The children were mesmerised, as was the teacher when I sat both Owls on his arm and they flew to the top of the tallest cupboard and refused to come down...
I've re-discovered the shipping forecast since finding Radio 4...all those places with strange names...Dogger Bight is my favourite. And the Archers! Shula is still in it and she must be at least ninety...years and years ago, long before my parents bought a television, we listened to the radio. Children's Hour and Two-Way Family Favourites for people in the Armed Forces...Hancock's Half Hour and the best comedy...The Navy Lark. But the programme I can still remember because of the atmosphere around it, was Lorna Doone, which was serialised on a Sunday night...I used to huddle up in a chair and listen to every word, totally enraptured by the visions of Dartmoor wreathed in cold swirling mists and the doom struck Doone family.
Another favourite was listening to Under Milkwood which used to be repeated every so often...the very best version was read by Richard Burton whose voice suited the story so well...but Father disliked him...said his voice sounded like he'd been drinking treacle. It was more likely to have been a decent Whiskey actually...