Posie's Blog. Tales of island life on a hebridean hill farm

Posie's Blog. Tales of island life on a hebridean hill farm

Friday, 24 August 2007

Things that go 'Woof' in the night......





We were at a fabulous Caribbean party last weekend, setting off, in the ‘mandatory’ beach wear attire, we worried that it would be dampened by the horrendous wet weather that had shrouded the island in mist and drizzly rain for the whole day. Not so. We all had an amazing time, with Caribbean cocktails, limbo dancing, hula hoops, palm tree canopies, spit roast pork and a huge BBQ, not to mention the good company, and the promise of more smoked mackerel from the skipper off the Jura ferry boat, a bag of frozen sloes from his wife, and with a bit more cajoling, the happy farmer thinks he may just be able to persuade him to spill the beans on the secret location, somewhere deep in the island’s woods, that he visits in September for a plentiful supply of sloes. The happy farmer will be washing out more flagons in preparation for his sloe gin making at this rate!

Arriving home much later, tired children sleeping in the back of the jeep, the happy farmer went over to welcome our holiday guests who had just arrived off a delayed evening ferry. He sloshed through the puddles and rain, in the darkness, still clad in his ‘beach wear’ attire, to give them a good island welcome…and those shorts did the trick, he managed to convince them that the weather here had been spectacular for the whole day. As the morning arrived, so did the sun, and it hasn’t stopped shining since.

Sunday greeted us with Mist the sheep dog coming into her first season though. We could recognise the signs, Roy, her male counterpart, was following her around the garden, nose firmly glued to her, sniffing away. We separated them, and Mist had to be confined to barracks for the day. Night time came and the happy farmer took Mist from her kennel and placed her on a long chain in the shed, with her bed and water bowl. Roy reluctantly went to the kennel alone.

At some unearthly hour we were woken by Mist barking outside the bedroom window. ‘Houdini’ had managed to escape from the chain, escape out of the locked shed, and had decided to take herself off to play with the pigs, in the middle of the night. Of course the pigs were not for waking up and joining in with her shenanigans at such a late hour, hence all the barking, as they lay lifeless, sound asleep, refusing to budge.

One weary happy farmer, dragged himself out of bed, got dressed and collected his dog and took her back to the shed, securely shutting her in this time, and returning with legs covered in flea bites, to a robin, flying around son’s bedroom. Much later, ‘de flea ed’ and robin rescued, he returned to his slumbers.

Next night, 2.00am we were woken by one howling, barking sheep dog. We couldn’t sleep for the noise, and despite the happy farmer’s quips that we could charge our lovely guests extra for the authentic farm yard sounds in the middle of the night, one weary happy farmer had to get up and go and rescue his dog from the shed. A lady needs her bed, so Roy, the sheep dog got ousted from the kennel, and Mist duly went to her own familiar bed and fell fast asleep. She hasn’t bothered us since. Roy now has a ‘camp’ bed in the garden, so far so good….and hopefully no puppies!!

Until next time…

17 comments:

ChrisH said...

Blimey! You do have a good time up there - except when you're up a ladder painting!

Faith said...

Poor happy farmer! I must try his trick of wearing beach gear here and see if it brings the good weather. Its so damp and rainy, but weekend is forecast better.

laurie said...

that sounds like too much fun. your weather sure has been erratic.

i hope september is gloriously golden for you. it's right around the corner..

Crystal Jigsaw said...

Dedication and commitment to your dogs!! Don't you want puppies? They're ever so cute!

Crystal xx

Preseli Mags said...

That all sounds such fun! Why is it that dogs sound so much louder at night? I'm glad the 'lady' got her own bed back, that's exactly as it should be!

Pondside said...

If I didn't know better I'd think that life on your island was all a round of grill parties, theme parties, fun and games!!! I love your happy and positive way of writing - I know that farming is hard and that your life must also have its ups and downs, but it's very good to read about the good times!

bodran... said...

Hello just catching up,your white washed house looks splendid well done..x

snailbeachshepherdess said...

you make island life sound so wonderful and indeed I hope it is!
Have got packs of frozen sloes in my freezer as well should you be passing on the way to the West Midlands.....

elizabethm said...

love the idea of the carribean beach wear bringing the sun! great cheerful blog as usual. would love to get up your way, i shall have to plot.

ska said...

fab picture in my head now of happy farmer in his carribean beach gaer! and good luck separating the dogs!!

@themill said...

Amazing what some visitors will enjoy as the 'true rural experience'

DJ Kirkby said...

That party sounded fab...hmmm you have given me an idea for my 'girly nite in' on the 22nd Sept!

Cait O'Connor said...

You have a very patient husband. I love your whitewashed farmhouse. Our cottage needs doing again, you have inspired me.

kathleen said...

hmm, they say that pigs are as smart or smarter than dogs...but hormones speak louder than anything (just ask Roy)!

Blossomcottage said...

There really is something good about living on an Island and you have certainly found it and all the other nice things.
Blossom

Exmoorjane said...

Agghh, nothing worse than a barking dog at night..... But the party sounds fabulous! Go girl go!

WesterWitch/Headmistress said...

Oh the joys of keeping dogs . . .