Back at Vanessa and Lisa’s. Brian the cat has grown somewhat and is now in control of the whole household. She, yes, she, there is no accounting for the names people give to their pets, stands up to the dog now who is most upset by the newcomer and insists on getting poor old Ziggy to play.
The pumpkin that we had meddled with earlier in the season had grown a treat. Once the flower had withered, the stocking was removed and it carried on growing as if nothing had happened. It is probably two feet in circumference now and is packed with seeds that will come true when they are sown.
Windowsills throughout the farmhouse are covered with bowls and jars of seeds, sitting out to dry and awaiting packets. It was so much fun to return and be immersed in the enthusiasm of vegetable growing, preserving and seed saving and be a small part of life on the farm once again. We picked ripe figs for a couple of hours then spent the rest of the day immersed in canning and making chutney. Jam is a no, no, as neither of them like it, so several batches of red and green chutney were concocted and the tantalising six week wait now ensues before it is mature enough to taste. How will I ever know how good it is? The whole figs in syrup have an amazingly vibrant colour, the bright green fleshy fruit suspended in pink pink liquid contrast so well with the jars of the near black varieties.
The taste of summer preserved for a cold night surprise in the depths of winter. Excitement in country life comes in unexpected ways.