My patience is being tested today. I'm consoling myself that I don't think I do too badly when it comes to the seven other virtues. Definitely not as badly as I do with patience. Especially when there doesn't seem to be anything much I can do to remove the object of my impatience. Like queues and traffic lights. Just had to throw that in. No, today it is feral cats. I've spotted three in recent weeks and one, which was rather beautiful glossy pitch black, even walked up the steps, on to the deck and had a look around the door to see who (or what) was inside. That one has been around for quite a while, has been spotted down the back of the farm, at the cow shed and at my son's house, too. The other two are reasonably newcomers.
I blame them for the disappearance of all my baby chickens while I was away. Either them or hawks but there don't appear to be many hawks around this year. Or maybe even they are frightened of the cats.
I know they are frightening the daylights out of my hens. The racket the poor chooks have been making this morning tells me there is a cat around somewhere. Can't count the number of times I've been outside to talk soothingly to them. They don't understand and take absolutely no notice.
I've tried shouting and throwing things in the general direction I usually spot the feline terrorists. Five minutes later the racket starts up again.
So here I am starting the new year with dark thoughts. They have to go. While I'm thinking mainly of my chooks, I wonder how many birds are they killing as well?
Somehow I don't think the budding archers in the family will be any threat.
Georgia's Christmas present was enjoyed by more than just herself when we all gathered on the farm for a late Christmas celebration. None of us know anything about archery technique but Georgia seems to have developed a style that works for her.
Her father always encourages competition.
It's easier to photograph than most sports my family like to play; if only I could train them to release on my count of two! And it made for entertaining family games. Don't you love the target? You probably can't make out the turkey (30 points) and rabbit (50 points). I had visions of an arrow going straight through the board and piercing a tyre on the quad bike that was propping it up but all was well.
Ahh, spending some time remembering those lovely, happy family gatherings has soothed me.