Pembrokeshire Musings - 5 months in
So, what have we learnt in the first five months?
Dave loves the gadgets, and the bigger the gadget the better! Smallholding is a fantastic excuse for buying big gadgets!
Tractors work better with four wheels on the ground.
The Pembrokeshire Promise. The Gregorian Calendar has passed Pembrokeshire by. If you ask local workies to commit to a date you will be given (as a minimum) three reasons why they cannot provide a date, and leave you with a vague assurance. Workies also never say no to a job, but do take all Yes responses as tentative (a Pembrokeshire Promise)
By definition, as you have no start date, be wary of making plans based on another job being completed.
Workies must be continually pestered, before and during work activities, and sometimes after if you feel obliged to pay them for their services.
Workies frequently get abducted by aliens. The only logical explanation to some of the above.
Lawn Mowers (even the mini tractor type) don't cope well with a 4 acre field.
Slugs are the spawn of the devil, and Butterflies are winged brothers from another mother.
Chickens are dudes
Piglets dig, and piglets will find any gap in a fence that exists. Supplementary : piglets do not like electric fence, and nor do Miniature Schnauzers.
Trailers are easy to tow forwards! More practice required backwards!
Carrots don't like our soil - potatoes do.
Tall, thin fence posts bend
Raised tractor mounted buckets stick out a long way (sorry barn!)
German Shepherd puppies grow
NHS appointments don't happen first time, or second, or third.
On a Smallholding you must always have a can of TyreWeld to hand
Welsh Cakes, straight off the hob, are lush
The Welsh do say lush, lovely, tidy, etc.
Bats aren't scary, unless they are flapping round your head at 2am, or are flapping in the toilet bowl
Courgette plants must never be left unattended
Lambs are arrogant devils (perhaps related to slugs)
Anything left by previous owners (they left a lot!) is on its last legs (at best)
The electrician used by previous owners should go back to school.
A flame-gun gets a bonfire going well, and if said bonfire is predominately garden waste, expect an enormous amount of smoke. Oh yes, and remove gas canisters from the area before lighting.
Dexter, the Welsh Border Collie, prefers to chase things rather than round anything up - especially if said thing is a ball, frisbee, etc.
Chopping wood is manly!
Any job will always take a lot longer than planned.
Our new friends at Moat Goats (another mad goat couple) have been our best 'find' yet. Meg and Damo have a 150ish strong herd of goats, and their knowledge and help has meant more to us than we can possibly say. Supplementary : One key teaching has been how to assess a male goat that one may be looking to purchase. Such a beast can be rather large, so being expected to perform an 'extremely intimate' examination of the animal is a rather interesting experience which I had not foreseen.
This is the riskiest thing we have ever done. It is a roller-coaster ride of course, but we have absolutely no regrets. It still feels like a dream at times, especially when the day ends like this:
The one big question that remains unanswered 5 months in -