Wednesday 2nd. July, 2014 – And still the grass hasn’t been cut 

Although it might not look like it from Mix’s face, this is a picture of two very happy dogs. They play at having battles together. Rowan is always the instigator and then Mix chases and they end up rolling around together on the grass. These fun-battles can go on for half an hour or more. For Rowan it is just what a puppy does with her big brother; for Mix it is a whole new life – he never learned to play until Rowan arrived

Up and walked Mix, breakfasted in the farmhouse, showered and drove up to Cranshaws to spend the morning with Jack. Jack showed me his new system: his television and his sound system are all linked together and the sound is superb. He also let me hear some Offenbach played from a vinyl disk – it sounds really good with great separation of the different instruments. We blethered and listened to music for about three hours before I left him in peace and returned to Mount Pleasant.

Discovered that everyone had been very busy: Rachel and Sandy had been weaving in the stables. That is now fully functional and ready for our opening party. Mum had been at her book group where several of the members talked about their favourite childhood books. Mum spoke about 'Now we are Six' and 'Wind in the Willows'. Olive read recipe books (yippee!) and Digger worked in his garden.

The wind had got up and Rachel and I had to secure our wood supply and ensure that it didn’t get wet before we build it into the roof of the barn.

Rachel is tying down the tarpaulin and we have covered it with ladders to ensure that it doesn’t get lifted by the wind

Here I lunched and watched Andy Murray losing his quarter final match at Wimbledon. It is easy for folk to say he lost badly – in reality, didn’t he do well to have got so far and to have flown the flag for Scotland for so long? Then I settled to and prepared the music for Arrochar for Sunday and by the time this was completed there was just a short window of opportunity left to take Mix for a walk before abandoning him to the farmhouse and setting off with Rachel to see Henry IV part two at the Maltings streamed from the Royal Shakespeare Company.

It was a superb production – I enjoyed it even more than part one which I thought was excellent. I particularly, of course, enjoyed Anthony Sher as Falstaff, Oliver Ford Davies as Justice Shallow and Paola Dionisotti as Mistress Quickly but in reality it would be hard to fault anyone in this superb cast. The one flaw was that the stream collapsed about five minutes from the end and we had to leave with the play unresolved. Fortunately it was right at the end – Falstaff and his supporters were standing waiting for the new King to arrive. The King would have arrived rejected Falstaff and told him that he would have nothing to do with him until he amended his ways, and then moved on. But it was disappointing to miss this finale. I suspect that the theatre wasn’t geared up to this eventuality as it must have been a first. No doubt they will be prepared in the future.

Drove home and came to the summer house to read the final page of dialogue (of Henry IV) and then walked Mix before bed. It has been another excellent day, even if the grass hasn’t been cut yet.


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