Monday, December 6, 2010
It snowed again today - 7 hours without stopping. Scotland is at a standstill. No doubt, as I type this, some poor folks will still be sitting in the motorway jams they have been in since 11 am this morning.
We have had no post, no deliveries, no buses for over a week. Nothing is moving, all is quiet.
Apart from fresh milk, I have not needed to buy any food since before the storm. Our store cupboard and tiny freezer have provided us with warm and nutritious meals, and one of the hens is still laying. We make bread or scones, soups, stews and grain dishes. Who knows, I may even need to open that packet of organic amaranth that has lived on the dry goods shelf for a couple of years. Our fresh veg is running low. Plenty onions and roots, but the green stuff is buried under deep deep snow. Yesterday, craving some fresh kale, I ventured down to the veg plot. I waded through snow up to the top of my thighs, ducked below a telephone cable that had come down in the garden and headed for where I hoped was the kale patch. I forgot the spade !!! I dug down, down, down with my bare hands and found a frozen stalk of kale. Scrabbling around and pulling frantically, I collected enough for dinner, and headed back up to plunge my freezing hands under the hot tap.
Fuel self-sufficiency is our first acheivable goal for next year. As crofters, we have been allocated our own peat bank. Peat was the crofters main source of fuel,but this practice died out years ago, as folk installed 'the oil' to heat their homes. Now, of course, there has been a bit of a revival with the high oil prices. We will be heading out to the peats next spring, so no doubt there will be plenty of blog posts about that. This impressive stack is sadly not ours, but one in the next village. It is what we are aiming for.
And so, back to the here and now. Meal planning is becoming more of a challenge, we wait until dusk to light the fire, and we have a leak in the conservatory. It is not bad, but it is persistent, and we cannot see where it is coming from. It is where the conservatory roof joins on to the house wall, so we suspect it could be a loose piece of flashing, but the snow is deep on the roof and we can't trace it. At least it is only the seasonal table that is out of action, so I am thankful for that.
Warm wishes to you all. xx