What Katie did in April
PUBLISHED: 18:01 15 April 2010 | UPDATED: 11:47 28 February 2013
Broadcaster, writer and show compÃ¨re Katie Johnson and husband Glyn live on a smallholding in south Shropshire
What Katie did in April
Broadcaster, writer and show compre Katie Johnson and husband Glyn live on a smallholding in south Shropshire
I did something the other day Ive not done before (Ive obviously hit an age where I can): I sent a glass of wine back in a restaurant as it tasted dodgy. There was something quite liberating about doing it until I became nervous when the replacement arrived having suddenly thought that my taste buds might have been affected by the pickled onion Id eaten earlier.
Quite a few things of late have made me think Im at a certain age, one being the sat nav which Glyn bought me and the other, the self service till in the supermarket. I find myself speaking to both of them. For instance, I know Im approaching a roundabout and I know which exit I need but when the voice tells me at least three times I have to respond. And then when Im putting a box of cereal in my bag and the voice tells me to remove the item off the stand its just too much for me to stay quiet.
To calmer things, and were well on the way with growing our potatoes. Weve opted for growing them in sacks which gives us a bit more room for other things, including my latest urge which is for a wooden erection of some kind. Im dreaming a summer house where I can look out and see the hens sunbathing with their outstretched wings, or maybe lie in wait with a camera to take some pictures of our resident Muntjac deer or the baby birds that seem to be everywhere. Glyn tends just to nod, knowing that last year the urge was a hot tub, and the year before that a conservatory and it soon passes!
Heres hoping this April is as warm as last years, and that the grass gets growing. Its great to see the dairy cows back in the fields once again having been indoors over the winter. Sadly theyre becoming a rare sight now, and its up to you and me to keep buying British milk or even better, support our local dairy. Its hard to learn that weve lost half our number of dairy farms in the last decade, and during that time 26 farmers left the industry each week... frightening.
My cookery teacher at school once told me I would marry a farmer due to the thickness of my pastry, in particular, my mince pies. I imagine farmhouse kitchens all over our rural county have had the odd box in the warm over the past few weeks,with a lamb or two in it, helping them along their way. Weve had a hen in the bath this week. As you do. And then we dried it off on top of the Rayburn for 24 hours. It seems to have worked although the dogs get a bit confused when a chicken is on top of the oven, as opposed to in it, and theres nothing for them.
I cant believe its Easter already, and then St Georges Day which sees the official start of the asparagus season. Our region certainly leads the way with some exceptional growers, although we havent our own festival like they do in Evesham, Worcestershire, which this month will be going head to head with Wassailing in Herefordshire at the Where Else But England Awards. Also in their category is hen racing, toe wrestling and a pantomime horse Grand National.
Finally, Id like to announce that Im a year older next month but Im numerically stationary. It worked for my mum who was 49 for years. As Mark Twain wrote: Age is an issue of mind over matter, if you dont mind, it doesnt matter. Now, where did I put that glass of wine?