I could hear a skylark singing early this morning, and when I looked out across the fields I could see it, dipping along in typical skylark fashion with madly fluttering winds and singing all the while. Then our neighbour fired up a chainsaw and I could no longer hear the lark. I thought that twenty to nine on a Sunday morning was rather early to be using a chainsaw, but the Systems Administrator said that it didn't happen very often and that they were probably clearing their boundary to put up more wire to keep the Airedales in. They have fenced most of the way along the lane, though there are no signs yet of a gate of any kind, but perhaps the Airedales would strike out for open country across the ditch. I am relieved they have finally decided to fence their garden, since I had got thoroughly fed up with the dogs coming into ours. They did not tell us they were going to do it, and the first section of fence they put up blocked the access to the pile of grass cuttings we had been dumping on our land but reached down a yard of their track. Clearing new access to the grass dump through a bank of brambles has been keeping the SA busy, but fortunately no birds were nesting in there.
I ended up spending most of the day weeding around the bonfire heap and compost bins, where great trails of goose grass had sprung up and reached almost triffid like proportions. Never mind one year's seeding, seven years' weeding, it would have been more like seven centuries if they had been allowed to ripen their seed, and I certainly didn't want it in the compost or the leaf bins. It was a great waste to allow so many weeds to shoot up at the same time as I had bags of shredded hedge trimmings waiting to go down as mulch, but I simply never found the time to finish tidying that area back in the spring. There were nettles hiding in among the goose grass, and even though I was sweltering in long trousers and a long sleeved shirt, my shins and right forearm are still tingling.
Really it was too hot to do anything. The cats lay around in various states of collapse, especially Mr Fluffy who looked quite doleful under all his fur, when he is normally such a cheerful cat. The SA declined to do anything this morning in the workshop, saying that it was too hot for resin to go off properly and no fun doing any kind of woodworking when the sawdust just stuck to your sweat. Later in the day when the sun had gone off the workshop and a breeze had got up, the SA made a frame to go round the begonia pots on the shelf in the porch to stop them toppling off in a gust of wind. After last year when the Coleus reached a critical height and then blew off, and the previous year when I had begonias again and three of them smashed themselves one windy afternoon in late summer, I was anxious for a pot frame so that it should not be third time unlucky, but I did not like to keep reminding (AKA nagging) the SA about it, and I was delighted when the frame appeared. I think it might be made out of a little bit more recycled pew.