Country talk


Last night I talked with a friend about the community juicing machine that pulps and squeezes your apple glut, and the pasteuriser that goes with it if you want to store the juice for longer. 

It’s just normal, for there to be a common apple juicer. And a community herb garden. And to get stuck behind a tractor taking the potato harvest down the hill to town. We were walking the dog this side of the Brendon Hills at lunchtime today, where it’s all farmland, and a couple of tractors were ferrying the vegetable hoard in massive yellow trailers down the hill. The lane is very narrow despite it being the main road up to Exmoor, but I’m yet to meet a driver round here who won’t immediately attempt to reverse to a passing place or pull in to let you pass, even with tonnes of spuds in his rear view mirror. 

The sun was pure and hot as we walked. Surely the cut hedgerows will start to grow again in this warmth: thin arms reaching ridiculously upwards from the buzzcut bush. And there were new blackberry flowers, just like the second crop on my chilli plants. 

At home I phoned the log guy to order firewood for the winter. It’s a good week to have it delivered even if it’s not yet cold enough to use it. Wood delivery day is one of my favourite days of the year. 

All this is a far cry from conversations about Homebase and movies and restaurants and cycle lanes and the quickest route around town avoiding the traffic jams that we used to have a few years ago. We’re properly in the country now.