I have discovered the joy of using an Aga! Last night, as the fish pie I’d prepared for dinner bubbled and turned golden in the oven, I drapped various rain sodden garments around it (the Aga not the fish pie!) where they crisped nicely along with the two lurchers Fern and Willow and Jonah the Jack Russell who are currently in my care.
Having been blessed with fine weather for the first five days of my sit it was a shock to be reaquainted with such driving rain once again. The dogs and I were none too impressed!!

Yesterday, after squelching through two fields of bog with plenty of opportunities for comedy prat-falls, the four of us arrived at Siblyback Lake covered in mud and soaked to the skin! Despite the adverse weather conditions my canine companions were still up for a good yomp! Surprisingly, the Anglers were out in force and we greeted each other with disconsolat nods. Only a few days ago I’d watched one of them net and land a rainbow trout as the sunlight glinted on the surface of the lake!!

Jonah and Fern trotted gamely on ahead of me whilst Willow became my shadow using me as a wind-break! Halfway around the lake we came to a bird-hide and sheltered inside its musty, gloom. I took the opportunity to pick-up my phone messages having no mobile signal at my Client’s cottage. I had discoverd earlier on in the walk that texting whilst trying to hold up my hood and keep an eye on the dogs as the rain and wind lashed and whipped about me was a non starter! It was not a day for taking photos either. Having successfully returned the missed calls of the previous evening we braved the wild weather once more. I was pleased when we met a couple walking their hairy hound. “We must be mad?!” They quipped as we passed each other.

It was with some relief that I reached the cottage and the welcoming warmth of the Aga. We all stood dripping on the flagstone kitchen floor whilst I tried to towel dry the saturated mutts before they had a chance to shake themselves sending muddy water up the walls!!