Saturday, 24 November 2012

after the deluge

The Lakeland inspects the foam
Oh the rain...the rain! The water is running off the moor bringing all the Autumn debris with it. The pipes and gutters are blocked and the torrents of water race down the roads tossing gravel and leaves aside. The flood waters are frothed up on the moor and then rush by leaving  foamy footmarks. When the rain stops, the temporary torrents slow to a trickle and gravel trails cover the roads. The south west has seen roads blocked, train lines flooded and farm land waterlogged. Yesterday was a respite day before more of the promised rain over night and tomorrow.
Yesterday The Curate and I made good use of the dry window by riding out on the moor. It was sodden from the recent rain but it didn't stop us appreciating the wide open spaces after being cooped up inside for the last few days. I am really enjoying riding Major The Clydesdale, who is wintering at Tor Royal Stables from Adventure Clydesdale. I can't believe that two years ago I knew nothing about Clydesdale horses or riding on Dartmoor.

The Collie inspects the water rushing under the clapper bridge.
After the excitement of interviews and appointments, there is a realisation that we still have quite a few months to wait and The Curate's work does not stop here. The Curate is getting on with his day to day job as the season of carol services and celebrations is fast approaching. Of course, I am in retirement but I haven't found much time to think about my previous life! My mind is mentally moving furniture around the rooms of a house I have only seen once. So on Monday we are returning to see the house with the knowledge that it will be our future home. 

The Curate and I were shown it separately on the interview day and we had no time to discuss it together. It was interesting to see what he had noticed compared to what I remembered. I had walked round the house on the interview day unable to, or wanting to, comprehend that this house could be our next home. I gave it all a cursory glance, not wanting to pre-empt the interview decision. Now we have to decide on paint colours, we have to meet the diocese property people to discuss updates and improvements - all to be finished by February - as this is when we are supposed to move in. My plans for 'retirement' activities may need to be put on hold. (There is also the added distraction of Tess the new pup, who was 3 weeks old yesterday!)

Tess - 3 weeks old

Sunday, 18 November 2012

It's official!

Tess at 15 days old
The wardens of a very beautiful Benefice in the diocese of Salisbury are pleased to announce (subject to CRB checks) that their new Rector  will be arriving just before Easter.

The benefice we are going to comprises of several rural parishes that work closely together, deep in beautiful Thomas Hardy country.

- And that's as much as we need to say. We are moving to the next door county (eastwards) and to a lovely rural location. We have lived in the counties either side of Dorset. We have explored and holidayed in Dorset when our boys were much younger and we are looking forward to revisiting old haunts.

So much to much to much to much to much to learn!

So long to wait!......The Curate (soon to be Rector) will be licensed in March. 

Tess will join us after Christmas and will be our Dorset Dog

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Naming names

Mum keeps a careful eye on her pup.
This is the pup who will be coming with us to our new parish. She is one of the smallest and has unusual colouring for a collie but both The Curate and I feel drawn to her. Now for the name. Jem, our Lakeland, was named after a character in Jamaica Inn ( I know he was a  man). We had decided that our next dog would be called Jem when we were driving back to West Country after living in Gibraltar.  We had listen to the tapes of Jamica Inn as we drove from South to North Spain. 

Jed The Collie has a very suitable Devon collie name and he was also our Jedi Knight from Star Wars. 

This pup will probably be called Tess - still on the literary theme. Can you guess which area of the UK we are going to next? All will be revealed on Sunday when The Curate's appointment will be officially announced in both parishes ( and here).

Saturday, 10 November 2012

Next Steps

8 days old

Life has not slowed down yet except for yesterday when I was puppy sitting The Collie's new pups and mum for the afternoon. The six pups fed and then slept, grunting and squeaking rather like guinea pigs as they snuggled up to each other. Their eyes are not open so we are still waiting to see if any have the collie blue eyes. I had taken a bagful of things to do but as it was, I spent the afternoon just watching and photographing. It was so restful and mum was so calm that I was able to take the time to reflect on the past two days events.

The Curate and I have just returned from an interview that started with drinks on the night before and ended with a lovely lunch the next day. In between, The Curate was interviewed by two panels and preached on the gospel. I visited the various parishes attached to the vacancy with other interviewee's wives and drank coffee and ate cake. It is with great joy that I can say that The Curate was successful and we now know where we are heading. I can say no more until it is officially announced but - we are on our way!

In the meantime, we are thrilled with the pups and we are trying to choose one to join us on the next stage of our journey. Here they are:-


Sunday, 4 November 2012

There we are

Less that 24 hours old.
It is the first time I haven't had time to write a blog for over seven days and I am supposed to be retired! In the last week I have caught up with old and new friends, there have been exciting engagement and expecting baby announcements (not us I hasten to add). I have ridden in the first snows on the moor, visited the six new pups who are the offspring of our much loved Collie, seen the latest James Bond film and cooked for informal supper parties (the type of entertaining that I enjoy). Since 'retiring' I have never been so busy or so blessed! I was warned that there were not enough hours in the day by other retirees  - but I didn't believe I do!

We have had our old friend and neighbour to stay which has been lovely. Our Collie greeted her with such excitement - we have never heard him 'speak' in the way that he did when she arrived. And, of course, she totally spoilt both the dogs!.We have walked and talked together on the moor in sleet, snow and sunshine. Even the old Lakeland was determined to show she could keep up with us and climbed a tor. At nearly sixteen years old (what's that in dog years?) - I am constantly impressed by her determination.
 Then we had the news that six pups had arrived - we had been expecting to hear and so of course, we had to find time to visit the day old pups. These are our Collie's offspring and one will be joining our household eventually. How do you chose a single pup? - We would like them all!

With all this excitement going on in the house, the poor Curate is trying to prepare for another interview - somewhat tougher than the last one. I'm going along as well this time. It's a good job he manages to keep calm despite the chaos that seems to surround me! I just hope the vicarage is big enough for puppies, dogs, a Clydesdale horse (that I don't own yet....but one day!) and the alpacas I've just been to visit today(and would love to own!), the occasional visiting sons and a vicar and his wife!