It can be a bit of a glum time of year to walk around the farm. The days are getting shorter and everywhere looks a bit dull now that the scarlet hips and haws have all but gone from the hedges and most of the beautifully coloured autumn leaves have fallen.
And it’s muddy. Place your foot incautiously in some places and it slides out from underneath resulting in frantic arm waving to keep your balance or an undignified descent. It’s no surprise that the fields have been deserted by the fair-weather walkers and you can walk for miles without meeting anybody else.
It’s cold so you need to wrap up with coat, gloves and hat and decide whether to walk in wellies (dry feet but uncomfortable to walk in) or walking boots (wet feet if there are lots of puddles but comfortable). I usually choose walking boots but have been having problems with the bootlaces. Despite tying them in an increasingly complicated configuration, they work loose and flap around in the mud creating a trip hazard. A bit like life and Covid.
But today, the sun was shining and the sky was blue, though the wind was keen. My bootlaces stayed firmly tied and I didn’t slip too much in the mud or get wet feet. Best of all, the lumps of mud in the middle of a wheat field turned out to be two hares, which suddenly sprang up and rocketed off before pausing to look back. A joyous sight.