An eventful week when nothing happened

Way-aye, Roscoe here.

It was a busy sort of week, last week, but nothing really happened.

There was a lot of banging on Tuesday and Wednesday. On the roof above us. Mam said it was people come to mend it and there was nothing to worry about. It felt like things were falling off it as well as being banged, and machine noises, too, and Mam put us in our boxes and settled us into the summerhouse with the door closed for a while. She said it was to keep us away from the noise. We went to sleep. You know, I like being in the box with Neville. He’s lovely and warm and soft. Biggles was in his box next door. I don’t know where Mam went. Back to her computer, I think.

She’s been busy this week, working on plans for the new book. Over the weekend she made some pretty pictures on her screen, then said a lot of rude words when she came back to it next morning and it wouldn’t do what it had done last night. I don’t know what it means either, I just tell you what went on. I think she fixed it in the end.

I keep promising you a description of Mam eating something called an ice cream.

It happens at the weekend. There’s a pretty jingly noise outside, and Mam gets up or rushes through our room if she’s in the garden, and goes out of the front door. She comes back with something in her hand. It’s a ginger coloured thing she holds, and there’s some white stuff called ice cream balanced on the top. And usually it has a brown stick in it. I think it always has the stick, but sometimes Mam’s already pushed it down into the ginger bit, which must be hollow, before I see it.

Then Mam sits down, and sticks her tongue out and sort of lays the white stuff on it and twirls it so it rubs off on her tongue. She does that for ages. Taking a bit of a lick and then pausing before the next one. She makes it a very pretty shape, all smooth edges and pointed at the top. Eventually the white stuff gets down to the level of the ginger stuff, and she nibbles that down, even, all the way round, At that stage you can just about see the brown stick again, but it’s covered with ice cream. Then she bites the top of that off, and goes on down, biting across the whole thing until it’s all gone.

It takes her ages, but it’s fun to watch.

We went out in the garden at the weekend. It got quite cool so we came in again, but it was nice while it lasted. Mummy’s very happy with whatever they did to the roof. I’m glad they’ve gone away though.

Oh, I went to see Dr Mark on Wedenesday. Mam told him I sometimes look a bit under the weather, and then she gives me metacam to help me get through the day. She’d checked my teeth and everything, and just wanted to make sure she hadn’t missed anything. And I agreed with her and told him there was nothing wrong that a bit of age-reversal wouldn’t sort out, but he just told her she could keep giving me the metacam when I needed it, and otherwise I was in great shape. And she asked him to check Neville’s heart and he said it was fine.

So it’s official. We’re fine. And Biggles is normal for Biggles.

See you next week. I wish this lady would come round so we could fill this cage up. Maybe those summer gifts Mam bought for all of us will turn into Christmas presents?

love

Roscoe xxx

Garden Vegetables!

Way-aye, Roscoe here.

It’s been another busy week. We’ve been eating piles of grass Mam cuts for us when it’s too wet to go out. It grows all by itself at the bottom of the garden, along with some wildflowers that we’re not allowed to eat. Well, take us down there, Mam, and we’ll eat the grass and not the flowers, right?

Mam’s been making funny noises doing what she calls drilling and screw driving. She did it on the paved area, then brought it over in two L shaped pieces to the red carpet places. Then she screwed some more and made it into a rectangle.

Then she dragged all the bags of soil from the old compost heap over, and poured it into the rectangle. It filled about half of it. She folded up the carpet and laid it against the earth, then she planted the vegetables from the pots. There’s:

  • Dragon kale
  • Ragged kale (the one we think is a bit iffy)
  • tiny celeriac plants
  • cos lettuce (we’re eating the ones left in the pots now)
  • swiss chard
  • endive frizee (we’ve had some of that too)

And I think that’s the lot. Maybe when she gets some more soil she’ll sow some carrots, although the ones in the big pot are fabulous,

Then she fixed the insect mesh over it. She says it’s to keep the cats off, as well as the butterflies.

Then yesterday she did the second rectangle, although she didn’t put any soil in it. She says she’s going to scrape the grass off, fork it over a bit, and sow green manure in it to break up the soil. Look, I just tell you what she says. I don’t understand it at all. It’ll make sense when I see what she’s done, probably.

Run around the vegetables

No news on the newbies. But Mam’s put the fleece down in their cage, which must be a good sign. And they’ll be getting the snowman bed and tunnel.

Talking of cagewear, Mam gave me and Nev the blue snugglesack alongside the zebra one. Now we don’t need to argue about who’s sitting in it!

See you next time

Roscoe xxxx

The new routine

Way-aye, Roscoe here again.

Nowt much has happened this week. Except May finished.

We’ve had morning cuddles and cucumber, a run, and breakfast. Then we’ve had a snooze or three.

I have to say, the amount of breakfast varies. Sometimes we get just three bits of veggies from the fridge (it’s colder, and not as fresh) and sometimes we get lots of little bits, mostly tasters, from the garden. They’re fresh and warm. That’s because the sun’s been shining on them, Mam hasn’t heated them up or anything.

Things from the garden I’ve identified: vetch, dandelion, plantain, grass (sometimes Mam picks a few very long stalks to include in our breakfast), kale leaves (different from the fridge ones), carrot leaves, strawberry leaves, hawthorn leaves, and hazel leaves. I think Mam was trying those out on us, and since we liked them, she brought twigs of hawthorn the next day, soft new growth, which I rather liked. There are also usually a couple of herby leaves, like mint, rosemary, lavender, parsley or thyme. And sometimes basil from the kitchen, because that grows indoors.

It’s been hot and sunny, and we’ve been out in the garden every afternoon once it’s nearly shadowy. I reckon Mam cut down on breakfast because we spend the afternoon eating grass, but it doesn’t quite work like that, Mam, because we’d be eating hay if we weren’t outside. We get hay when we come back in, at any rate.

Mam says to make the most of it because it’s going to get cooler and rainy next Wednesday onwards. She’s a bit pleased because she’s run out of rainwater to water the pots with. She has to use the mains instead. You’ll probably understand what that means.

Mam’s been spending lots of time in the garden growing things and cutting things and making things. It’s good for her, I think. Apparently we can come out of this avirus lockdown a little, but Mam isn’t because the scientists say it’s too early. She seems a bit worried by something she learnt the other day, but she hasn’t explained it to me, save that she has to have someone nearby who can come in to look after her when she’s ill.

Well, Auntie Vikki always did that, so I’m sure she’ll find someone else now that Auntie Vikki (and Auntie Claire) don’t live near us any more.

And there’s no sign of some new boys coming yet. We just have to be patient. As long as there’s enough cucumber and hay, Mam, we’ll be fine.

Have a nice week

love

Roscoe xxx

It’s good for the Grass!

Way-aye, Roscoe here.

I thought I’d tell you about our grass today. We have several types, but mostly you can divide it into that which Mam picks (or cuts) and brings into us, and that we graze on when we’re out in our run.

We’ve been going out in our run a lot, and it’s been quite hot in the last week or so.

Of course, Mam has been watering the grass with a little pointy spray thing ever since she realised her new grass needed it, back at the end of March. The trouble is, this spray doesn’t reach everywhere, and some of the grass, including the bit where the first veggie patch is going, has sort of lines between it.

The woodpigeons under the pointy spray

Mam said to me it was where the bits that had been laid edge to edge shrank, so now there’s a gap between the edges. I don’t see it myself, but I’m sure she’s right. She has got a plan for it – she will spread soil with grass seed in it where it needs the lines filled in when autumn comes. But that’s a long way away. Mam has plans for everything, as you’ve probably noticed.

Then she got a new water spray thing which she tried out on Friday. It waters everywhere at once, forwards and back again. And the shed roof and the neighbour’s wall… But it works for the whole of our grass and the top of the flowers beyond, which is good.

Saturday it rained nearly all day. Well, showers. Heavy ones.

Anyway, the grass. We eat the new grass. and it’s very nice. That’s ‘very nice’ because it’s not good to seem ungrateful… The bits she cuts for us with her scissors, or just picks and brings in, are much better. They are richer and lusher (and longer). They have flowers on them, the proper grass flowers, still in their long sheath, and those are really yummy.

The old grass at the bottom of the slope in early spring. It has daisies in it now

That grass grows down in the older part of the garden, where it’s damper and shadier. She hoped we’d be able to go and eat it ourselves occasionally, but there are lots of buttercups and daisies as well. I wouldn’t eat those, Mam. I’m not silly. Okay, you can’t guarantee that the others wouldn’t.

But we only get that when we don’t go out. It’s a sort of conundrum. Go out and have quite yummy grass, or stay in and have extra-yummy grass.

Mam’s been reading up on poisonous plants because she was worried Bertie ate horsetail and it poisoned him. There’s lots of horsetail at the bottom of the garden and it turns up pretty well everywhere else, which she pulls out. But she found some growing in one of the places we’d been grazing, so she wondered whether that was why Bertie died. Then she discovered that he would have to have eaten it for several days for it to have started to have an effect. So that can’t have been it.

It’s good, this grass

You know, that’s one of the reasons our Mam is the greatest. She really really tries to do the very best for us, or at least the best she can in the circumstances. When we get out of lockdown, Mam’s hoping to get some other pigs who need a home. I reckon they’ll be very very lucky pigs to join us here.

See you next week, when it’ll be June!

Roscoe xxxx

Change of routine

Waye-aye, Roscoe here again. I suppose I don’t need to say that now, as you’re going to expect me all the time. Oh well, it’s part of my routine, so I’ll stick with it for now.

I don’t like to change my routine. I prefer things to have a nice regular pattern. But things are changing here. Only a bit, but just enough to notice.

First up, Mam wakes up then spends a while doing something in her room before she comes to sort us out. Well, she goes to the room at the other end of the hall, and usually calls in to say ‘good morning’, but then she goes back to her bed. She says it’s not time to get up yet, but the sun’s been up for ages, so why aren’t we?

The sun keeps changing. Not light and dark, and cloud and stuff, but it’s shining in on our runs in the morning. It was shining on Biggles first, but now it shines on us a bit too. Good thing Mam usually remembers to draw the fine curtain across before bedtime, so it’s light without being glaring. When the sun has gone round so it’s not shining on us any more, she usually pushes it back, but that’s not till after run time.

That’s another change: run time. Biggles is always a fuss-pot about being picked up before he’s had a proper wee, and now he’s being extra fussy, so Mam picks up Neville instead. Nev was right surprised at first, but he’s got used to it. Then Mam usually takes Biggles, then me. Then of course, she used to have her breakfast, come back and do Bertie and put Biggles back when she put Bertie down. Now that doesn’t happen, and we’re getting longer and longer runs in the morning. They’re not as much fun without Bertie to explore with. I have no idea what Mam’s doing all this time. But she says we’re finishing very much earlier than we used to, so I suppose she’s just filling in the time, like.

Bertie and me having fun before the runs were built.

The other thing that’s changed is our garden run. This week we’ve had the big panels up with the shades on them. Mam cut the grass with the big orange machine and I thought, uh-oh, no grass. But she left patches surrounded by wooden things, and she put our fence around those. We ate all the grass in one of them, so she put us in the one next to it yesterday. The grass was even longer in that one. I thought these wooden rails were marking out the new vegetable patch. I wonder if she expects us to dig it over as well? But she seems happy enough that we’re mowing it nice and level with the rest of the grass.

The three of us in the space where the veggies are going.

So, that’s what’s happening here. No sign of anyone coming to move into the empty run yet. Apparently nothing will happen till this avirus thing has gone away. And Mam wants it to go away soon so the man can come and decorate the wall behind the shelves, and then she can finish unpacking the boxes in our room.

Life’s so complicated. I hope it settles down again soon.

See you next week

Roscoe xxx

PS Mam said it was George’s anniversary yesterday. Nine years since he went over the Rainbow Bridge. That’s a long time.

Grass is good – and long!

Hello, Bertie here.

We’ve been out on the grass again, nearly every day for lots of hours. I hate to say it but Roscoe was right. Our run moved back towards the wooden hut called the summerhouse, and Mummy cut the rest of the grass with the orange machine. It’s ready to cut again, though. Mummy says she’ll do it today.

Apparently it’s going to be cooler this week, with rain as well. So we won’t go out. We’ve done a pretty good job on the grass, even though I say it myself. The bit we had this weekend was really lush. Mummy put the shade tunnel over it to encourage us to eat it.

Then she put the big rails up and I thought we were going to get a smaller pen, but no. She did it just to put the shade cover up for us. And while we were mowing under that, she put a thin white curtain up to give us some protection from the early morning sun. She thinks of everything, doesn’t she?

So that’s everything from me, apart from a ‘get well soon’ message to Digby.

See you next time

love

Bertie xxxx