Sunday, 27 December 2015

Real Farming......Not quite so twee....



A good run out to clear the lungs and the head. These Devon lanes are a touch on the soggy side right now, but there are plenty folks further North who'd give anything to have roads this dry.


This cottage is one of very few round here; that hasn't been 'done up, to within an inch of it's life'.
The garden is typically rural of the old school...i.e. 
"Who's got time or inclination for gardening as a hobby when you're outside working all day anyway?"

Picturesque perhaps; could do with a lick of paint certainly; but if you'd spent all day out with the cows, who could blame you for preferring a nice tidy; easy to run; brick built; centrally heated 'unsightly' bungaloid?




And here below; another scarce beast in these parts. 
A still in operation dairy farm in a valley where once, on account of it's lush grass, it was awash with cows. You'd have to spend most of your waking hours cycling these lanes to risk being stuck behind a herd of those beasts nowadays...It happened to me last Spring whilst pedaling 'The land that time forgot'  cowparsley strewn, misty meanderings of Mid Devon; but that's another story....

This is no nostalgia for the 'olden days'. I've done my time milking cows for months at a stretch. It takes a certain non flighty; steadily dedicated; (dare I say bovine?) routine loving type, to do it long term, even when it makes a living. 

But now with the price of milk on the floor; or at least unreliable enough to discourage long term investment in essential infrastructure; who would blame anyone in possession of a prime piece of real estate such as this; for selling it on to someone with the means to redo the thatch; paviour the collecting yard; and park a shiny 4wd thereupon.....And thence to live happily forever after in a 'Slantylightshire' fantasy land alongside gently grazing ponies for Jasper and Jemima..




If they do; I hope they'll preserve at least some of the wiggly tin for posterity...

Meanwhile; in further afield notes....


With funds somewhat boosted by familial seasonal largesse (Thanks Ma!) Have completed the final booking for my next let - out - of - the - valley - by - myself;  excursion....Someone got the hint about train tickets..and socks..



Will be hanging out on the fringe with a few more 'Green and Pleasant' (Peasant?) Farmers here...



You'd think there might be a modicum of consensus amongst; as to what to do?
But as with most cutting edges; it can get a bit messy... How to avoid self defeating infighting; how not to feel overwhelmed by the challenges ahead?

The problems are apparent to anyone who can spare even a couple of brain cells to rub together over the issues.... Climate change; habitat loss; soil degradation; flooding; food security; air and water pollution; malnutrition running alongside an obesity 'crisis'; depressed farm incomes (and farmers?) nigh on impossible access to land for new farming start ups; faced with inflated land prices; and an unhelpful (to say the least) planning system.

 Public ignorance and apathy. A system of profits paramount; that encourages farmers to 'get big or get out'.....A quick buck attitude; that colludes in the false image of  bucolically blissful country living peddled by some in the media; and oft pictorially plastered on the sides of the pantechnicons that ply our trunk roads, which masking the true realities of unsustainable factory farming and cheap imports...

I could go on ; and I have; and I doubtless shall again.

It will be interesting (to me) to listen to proposed solutions; and argue the toss with like and unalike minds....And to return with new ideas; and most likely more questions...

And I think there might be some dancing, on offer...


It really is quite astonishing the lengths to which I will go to avoid cracking on with those seed orders.... Toodle pip!...My lovelies...


No comments:

Post a Comment

Feel free to comment; or question....But be warned; you might get a reply...