The weather forecast for the rest of this week is dire, torrential rain, heavy showers, intermittent rain, and more showers. However, today has been warm and dry and by lunch time the ground began to shake a little as the combine harvester turned into the field and made its first cut around the perimeter of the field.
I abandoned my lawn mower and snatched the washing off the line as George chivvied the dogs back inside the house and closed all of the windows - past experience has shown that harvesting means noise, dust clouds, and lots of rodents running for their lives as their field is shaved and shelter lost. This is when the two new girls, Bennie and Sparky should come into their own and earn their keep by keeping our gardens free from invaders.
Bennie came triumphantly into the garden clutching a wriggling mouse in her jaws and then started to toy with it. After a few moments the mouse ran up a tree, hiding himself in the tangle of ivy and I have to confess that I was wishing him every success; he deserved to escape for his fighting spirit. I had to leave them to it and I don't know how it all ended. I couldn't watch.
This was Bennie earlier in the day as she tried out camouflage methods! Sparky is the real hunter as Bennie loses interest and concentration, so the mouse did stand a chance.
Naturally the wind was blowing towards the house today!
I love the field after the harvest because for a few brief weeks it has a holiday feel. I use the small gate which leads directly into it, and the dogs and I make the most of the freedom as we take the short cut through the field for our walks along the old railway line. When Toby and Pip were younger it used to bring out the puppy in them which was a delight.
We are fortunate because this field is used for the Enduro motorbike race in September, so the stubble gets left and the ploughing is delayed. In these days of such intensive farming when it seems that no sooner is a field harvested than it is ploughed and sown with the next crop, it is lovely to know that 'our' field is able to have a brief rest. I know that it will have the motorbike race to - forgive the pun - endure, but that seems a small price to pay for a few weeks rest.
We also get to enjoy ringside seats and brilliant views of the motorbikes. I'll take photos of the event when it happens.