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There was a weird thumping noise coming from the attic, so I went up to investigate and found nothing. Then when I went outside to check I saw the above sight.

No, that’s not an owl on my roof.


Yes, that was the cat on my roof this morning. No worries; the cat is just on the roof. Nothing to stress about or anything. I mean, what’s the worst that could happen. Oh… Hrm… Here, kitty-kitty! Come down, please?


Eventually he did come down, though. Or, well; he made it down to the gutter and then sat there confused as I tried to lure him over to the garage roof so he could jump down onto the old pig pen and down to the ground. After that adventure he wisely took refuge in the greenhouse – one of his favourite hang-outs on chilly mornings.

It was 7C / 45F when I woke up this morning, and though it is now (6pm) only just under 20c / 70F the sun is out in full force, so it has been hot enough for me to bask on the lawn in my underwear while the cat has been wise enough to hide in the shade of a shrub. And yes, I did fall asleep, but fortunately not for long enough to get burnt – and I have now retreated into the shade.

This summer living? I can get used to it… Fresh strawberries with breakfast, lunch and dinner, days where “mowing the lawn” is the only item on the to-do list…


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Okay, So Cat…

The cat wasn’t chipped, doesn’t have an ear tattoo, and none of the major animal societies in Denmark have a report of a similar cat missing in that region, so…

I’ve gotten the motorway service station where he jumped in my car to put up a poster with his picture, and I’ve posted him on the major Danish “lost animals” websites, so I’ll give it a fortnight before I close the deal and take him to the vet to get him chipped and registered.


I promise, he doesn’t normally look as evil as in this photo, but whenever I kneel down to take a photo of him he runs to me and starts rubbing his head against my hands, so it’s very hard to get a decent shot of him…

If nothing else, this picture proves that not all Scandinavian homes are furnished entirely by IKEA.

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Sorry about the title of this entry. It will be explained…

So, I was sitting in my car on the motorway, doing 120 km/h and generally being a bit bored, when suddenly my car made a strange noise. Well, I say “noise”; it was more of a “meow”. Very confusing, but then the car meowed again. Now, I don’t know much about cars, but they’re surely not supposed to meow!

Suddenly a cat jumps up from behind the passenger seat, across me and decides to sit on the dashboard. In front of me. On the motorway. Not, as you can imagine, an ideal situation. Especially as I’m pretty sure I don’t own a cat – or at least I was. I tried shooing it away, but the result was that it chose to lie down – which meant I could look over it so that seemed a workable compromise.

It must have jumped in the car when I was taking a break at a motorway service station. But what do I do with it? As far as I can see it has no ear tattoo, so today I’ll have to find out how to get checked if it’s chipped; it’s clearly a domestic cat, because it won’t leave me alone for a second – hence the title of this entry that was finished off by a cat walking across my keyboard!

Actually it’s kind of adorable… Kind of too adorable, really, because its behaviour indicates that it’s been used to a lot of human contact before it ended up jumping in my car at a petrol station – so clearly there must be an owner somewhere missing the cat. Hopefully they can be reunited soon, because god help me… SO ADORABLE!

Anyway, there we are. Me and a strange cat that car-jacked me. Or did I inadvertently cat-nap it? Who knows. For now it’s sitting on my desk, purring away merrily, when not walking across my keyboard or, indeed, myself.

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To Absent Hens…


So, that nesting pheasant I discovered in my rose border last weekend? Well, she must have been sitting there for quite some time, considering that it takes 23-25 days to hatch a pheasant egg – and she has now abandoned the nest with a 100% hatching rate!

She probably took her chicks down to the lake or somewhere, because she’s nowhere to be found in the garden. (Pheasant chicks are great runners from the get-go more or less, so they can easily follow their mother for quite a stretch.)

But… She made her nest in my garden! Awr… Isn’t that just wonderful? Also, those egg shells… I just love that olive-green shade of a pheasant egg.

I do hope this repeats next year!

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Gardening Friends…

I’m still so very much in love with my garden… And others like it too! I have starlings with a small brood of starlets – or whatever one should call them – and in the evening there are a few bats circling the skies above my garden. And this afternoon I ran into this beauty:


This pheasant hen has decided to nest in the rose border and it really feels quite special to have a pheasant nesting in my garden; I found her as I was cutting aquilegias for a bunch of flowers to bring back to town, and at first I just noticed this slightly worried, cooing sound but thought little of it until there was suddenly an eye looking at me from between the foliage.

When I was a kid I once reared a brood of pheasants in my parents’ back garden. One of my hens was broody, so I bought 18 pheasant eggs and as a good girl she managed to get 17 to hatch. Later, once the chicks reached adolescence, they were released on my grandfather’s farm – and considering how bad a shot he was, if they only stayed on his lands they will have lived to a ripe old age… These eggs, though, will face a more perilous existence; there is a hunting shack behind my garden, and the guy who leases the hunt is a better shot than my grandfather.

Stay in my garden, chicklets! As much as I love a nice, roast pheasant – or pheasant au vin or confit of pheasant or pheasant rillettes – I promise not to harm you.

The eggs should hatch in a few weeks – as far as I remember, the hatching time for pheasant eggs is around 21 days – so the timing is good; the mother and her chicks should be out and about well before my garden is overrun by people for my summer party on June 25th.

I’ve put out a bowl of water for her – dehydration is common in nesting hens, so I’m guessing that might go for pheasants as well – and blocked the garden path past the rose border to remind myself to stay out of her way. She is very welcome here, and I intend to make her stay as pleasant as possible.

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Too Posh?

I just commissioned an areal drawing of my house…


Okay, so what I did was to ask a friend to make a fantasy drawing based on this 1973 photo of my house. All I’ve asked is that he produces something that can hang next to this 16″ by 20″ photo, but there is no need for it to actually resemble the house. He’s allowed to imagine it any way he wants to – also the shed – and I’ll just have to wait and see when it comes to the result…

When I say “fantasy drawing” I actually mean it… he has free reigns to add towers, domes, whatever on his drawing.

My only limitation is that it needs to be large enough to hang next to the original photo, so it needs to be A3 at least.

(He’s very good both at sketching real environments – I have a framed drawing of his from Venice that I really like – and imaginary scenes. I want him to draw my house as it has never been and never will be, yet recognisable…)



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Lots of Everything


Lots of geese… The wild geese are still hanging out in the fields around my garden in their hundreds. It is an impressive sight when they all take flight at the same time, though in this picture it’s just a small part of the flock. My guess is the entire flock is close to a thousand when they are all together, but really; counting that many birds is a) impossible and b) beyond my patience threshold. Suffice to say there are LOTS!


My garden has snowdrops by the thousands. This is just one of the patches where they’ve naturalised in the lawn, and on top of that there are more regular clumps of them in the beds and borders. When the flowers begin to go over – but before the leaves die down – I’ll be digging up a few of the clumps to divide, and replant some and pot others up for a few friends who would like some. They can get a few hundred each, I suppose, and nobody will be able to tell the difference next spring.

The dog is not mine; he’s just vacationing with me while his owners are getting some sun in Maspalomas. Tomorrow I have to return him – I think that’s probably the best way to ensure they let me borrow him again in the future… So far I’ve been dog-sitting him three times in 2016 already, so even though he’s a bit of a bratty, 2½ years old springer spaniel, he’s definitely growing on me. And I’d like to think he enjoys my company as well, not to mention vacationing in a garden with loads of wild geese to chase in the fields around!


“Lots” means something different when it comes to my hellebores; they aren’t present in their thousands or even hundreds, but there are 6 good, large plants throughout the garden and they’re all blooming now. I tried growing hellebores (helleborus niger) in the old garden, but they died each time I tried, perhaps because of the damp clay soil. Here, though, they seem to thrive – though of course this is a different variety and a completely different soil type.

I really feel blessed to have taken over a garden that offers up so much for me to enjoy so soon in the season; it is an easy garden to fall in love with, both in terms of what is inside my fence and what lies beyond. I can’t imagine ever tiring of the fact that I have a lake view when I stand in the shower in the morning… I mean, how many people have a shower with a view?

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