Wild wind howled and piercing precipitation rattled the roof throughout the night and well into the morning.
Jackie photographed and I e-mailed this image of crooked hand from our 200 year old long case clock to Martin Fairhurst of Dials in Lymington who will repair it. Even with the bend the clock keeps perfect time and chimes seven minutes late according to the point of the digit, as if there were no crook in it.
After lunch I made a start on a month’s ironing. When the sun sneaked out I unplugged the iron and we sped after it. Since it had made the effort we would have been rude not to.
The field alongside South Sway Lane, once home to pony Gimlet and her foal,
was now occupied by a nomadic Mallard family.
A drain was overflowing, suggesting that the lane itself will be flooded soon. Last year it became impassable.
The rain had definitely not conceded the skies. Rainbows followed us around
The fast-flowing, rippling and bubbling Balmer Lawn stretch of Highland Water had overflowed its banks. Within seconds of my striding out to photograph it the clouds rolled in, rain hammered down, and my woollen jacket soon took on the scent of damp sheep.
On the signal of the click of my camera a reflective crow was instantly on the wing.
Just around the corner the sun emerged once more, cast long shadows, and burnished trees against a dark slate sky.
Lulled into a false sense of security I walked across a muddy field to photograph ponies sheltering among the trees. They knew that I would soon be walking through torrential bead curtains.
Houses and trees were silhouetted against the clouds’ bonfire smoke. The skies were changing by the second.
I heard gleeful laughter emanating from a parked people carrier whose occupants were impressed by the ponies. As I raised my camera in polite request
the mother of the boys cheerfully wound her window down and, with a smile, said “put your tongue back in”. This was, of course, the signal to stick it out further. Although rain still rolled down the vehicle it had stopped falling from the skies.
As I drafted this post the heavy rain clattered throughout against my window.
This evening we dined on oven fish and chips, green peas, cornichons, and pickled onions with which Jackie drank Hoegaarden and I finished the Coonawarra.