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Eight days a week

It’s a couple of months since we stopped the hustle and bustle of city life, although when we left lockdown curtailed any bustle or hustle.

You’d think living in the country might be a bit quieter with a lot less happening, but all in all we’ve had quite an eventful week.

First, long-awaited rains arrived and these helped a few of our fruit trees that were beginning to look worse for wear.

We’re expecting a lot of storms over the next week or so, and unusually they’re coming from the south-west. Monsoon rain so far has come from the south-east.

Most storms are sharp and sudden, and often over quickly. Nice cool winds are the first sign they are on their way, but it can get pretty wild. But as they come from the west, our balcony on the east side remains pretty dry, so it’s possible to go outside and enjoy the storm passing through.

Food has been a big feature during the rains. I’ve been eating exclusively Thai food since I got here and wanted to try something different, so for the last week or so she has been making pizza dough. Almost every day. After losing a couple of kilos since being here, things have regressed this week. Unlike the dough which has seen definite progression.

Let‘s say the base was ‘crispy‘ a week ago, while today’s effort was much lighter.

Hana shows her surprise at the dough rising

Some other foreign food took up part of our week. We found a nearby butcher who makes a few scottish delicacies. Lorne sausage, black pudding, haggis, tattie scones, that sort of thing. We ordered a selection for delivery, but nearby here means within a 3-4 drive, and by the time it had taken a detour on its way here it was no longer frozen.

Another delivery, from a Thai version of Amazon, didn’t arrive at all. Apparently it fell off the back of the van and a passing motorcyclist scooped it up and off it sped. Aye right.

Luckily we got a refund as it was quite valuable, but my guess is that the delivery team saw that it was being delivered to a foreigner and thought they‘d try their luck and make it go walkies. Maybe not, but now we order using hana’s name.

The Scottish butcher also resent our whole order a few days after the first order, and it arrived as cold as a Scottish winter. And it tastes smashin’.

tattie scone a wee bit overdone. When you are remote, simple food like this begins to feel like a luxury.

New neighbours also moved in across the way, and Dudley has been very curious.

Mother and calf are part of our extended family as they belong to Hana‘s brother and his wife. They’ve been quite nervous while settling in, but I hear today that the calf had a wee kick out at Dudley. I’m sure it won’t be the last time. He can be quite annoying.

Most of the time though he‘s ok, and definitely getting better by the week. He’s stopped barking at everyone and no longer tries to join every dog fight in the area - they are non-stop.

But he has his moments.

We took a terrific long walk yesterday morning and on the way back he decided to chase some chickens. He’s playing, but he somehow managed to catch a young chick, meaning I had to scale a barbed wire fence to drag him off and let the chick run free.

Don’t let photos like this kid you. He can be trouble!

Our walk took us to roads I’ve never been and I learned the land around us is not as flat as I thought. It was also good to meet a few neighbours. Lots of very friendly people.

Hana had a footwear problem as her soles decided to leave the rest of her shoe, but being resourceful is part of life here and a twig was snapped off and used as a quick repair tool, despite the attentions of Dudley

The greatest thing about our 2-hour walk is that it was over before 9. We had the whole day ahead of us to get other things done.

Next week will be busier for us as we begin planning our land and decide what vegetables we are going to try, where we are going to plant them, and how we are going to keep them watered.

Exciting times ahead…

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