Here comes the sun


After three summers of truly shite weather, the UK is finally seeing some sunshine. It’s 26C (hot by our standards) and it’s predicted to last for at least a week.

Can you imagine? A WHOLE BLOODY WEEK!!

I enjoyed an hour at my allotment last night doing some desultory weeding and watering, but mostly just marvelling at the simple pleasure of feeling the evening sun on my back and watching a slow, late sunset.

As a Californian colleague once told me, the best bit about living in the UK is seeing how overjoyed – how genuinely, riotously happy – everyone is made by a few days of clear weather. “If only it took so little to make most people delirious.”

I guess you have to be British to really understand that.

Posted on 5th July 2013
Under: Summer, Weather | 2 Comments »

The sun is out. The matrix has reloaded.

Incredibly, there is sunshine today. At 12C, it’s not exactly the Sahara… but it sure feels like it after the winter we’ve endured.

I went to the plot. I planted onion sets, cleared the asparagus bed and spread manure. It felt good.

Why can’t I live in Italy? 12C is about as bad as it gets in, say, Sicily. I could grow melons, lemons and oranges – and peaches and nectarines. Bloody marvellous.

Instead, I’m living in this shithole. Buggeration.

Posted on 7th April 2013
Under: Winter | 5 Comments »

Sowing in the sunshine

Rows of parsnip, beetroot and carrot seedsWow. What a gorgeous day yesterday was. It was only 17C, but felt like 25C after the long winter we’ve suffered. The feeling of sun on your face after seven months of cloud and rain is a very special one.

As usual, I had a lengthy list of allotment tasks, and got only a fraction done. This is the toughest time of year for the committed gardener, no question. In April and May (especially May) I’m chasing my arse from dawn to dusk.

It’s a bugger when you’ve got a full-time job, because some tasks simply can’t wait. When you get the luxury of a break in the rain (welcome to the UK), you simply have to do them – whatever the day of the week.

So there are many evenings between now and June when I’ll be at the plot at 8.30pm, cutting an effete figure in office attire.

Ostensibly I’ll be there to plant out peas or leeks or cabbages, but my main concern will be keeping horseshit off my tie.

Posted on 11th April 2010
Under: Seed sowing | 13 Comments »


Seen the forecast… eh, eh?

Warm, sunny, windless, gorgeous (er, apparently).

I’m smacking my lips. Can’t wait to get stuck in to my allotment and actually do some work this weekend.

Maybe even cut the first asparagus. Now I’m salivating just thinking about it.

Posted on 9th April 2010
Under: Spring, Uncategorized | 6 Comments »