I have a plethora (such a groovy word) of plans for today. I fill the trailer with firewood, collect pine cones, then do more bonfiring of flax leaves and gum tree bark. And then, some planting behind the pond. Planting! Nice - finally something lovely and creative.

 Burn, burn...
Eucalyptus Bark on the Autumn Bonfire

Very exciting garden news - I have found a pile of home-made compost. I will use it to 'enrich' the dry, dusty soil around the Reading Stump. where I will plant a curve of rock lilies (Renga Renga). The gnomes in Book Club (don't ask) have expressed their preference for native greenery.

Much later...

Two more pipe smokers wanted to join Book Club. Not a problem - popped them onto appropriate stumps to listen to the stories.

Book Club Gnomes on the Reading Stump

Checked in with the fishermen. How's it going? Same old, same old. Except there is a small problem. My original fishing gnome, Rupert, is missing.

 Plus a lazybones gnome snoozing above the path.
Fishing Gnomes

I walked slowly around the pond peering into the clear water, looking for a tell-tale bright red hat amongst the drenched leaf litter. Nothing. Poor chap! In May 2018 (so sorry about this) Rupert was rescued from the pond's edge, submerged in mud up to his chin. Apparently I 'laid him carefully in some dry leaves'. So where oh where is he now?

 My little grey cottage cat.


Planted the plants and re-routed the path behind the pond - much better. Spent the last hour raking and topping up the bonfire with gum leaves. Gardens underneath Eucapyltus trees get so messy, and all that fuel left lying around is a fire risk in summer.

Hello Minimus...

Minimus (my cottage cat) kept me company. I watched her approach, checking out the new path - she is a scuttling, low-to-the-ground cat, never elegant. But Minimus is always garden-friendly, and claims this area as her own domain. She smooched a pipe-smoking gnome, then settled down next to him to wash her bottom. As one does, when one is a cat.

Sunday 17th May

Aha! The first almost-frost. My temperature indicator, Minimus, stayed on the bed in the cottage all night, and the tips of her ears were quite cold. Remember reading a book about a daft chap wintering over on a yacht in Alaska - his onboard cat got frostbitten ears. Aargh!