Sue Woodcock: Bad luck gives way to a pleasing mystery and some new arrivals

My week from hell hadn’t quite finished. After a good day out visiting my friend in hospital, and shopping, I returned just before dusk, switched on the generator and settled down for a quiet evening in. Within a few minutes, the generator went off and I discovered the fan-belt had broken.

I lit the oil lamps, did some paperwork in the car and headed very early to bed. At least I had the radio.

I acquired a tweed suit for the murder mystery play where I act the part of a 1930s’ woman. I wore it at the dress rehearsal, much to the amusement of my fellow thespians. One of them commented that I actually had legs as he had never seen me in a skirt before.

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Saturday was the big day and I picked up a couple of elderly friends to take them. For the first time, I was word perfect, and then we ate while our audience discussed how to solve the mystery over their meal. We had been directed to remain in our roles throughout the evening, and it was great fun, if a little surreal.

Most of the cast were new to this but they were all superb and two of the teams correctly guessed the identity of the culprit. The evening raised £450 for Hubberholme church.

I returned my two passengers to their home and got back rather elated and moderately tired.

Hecate, one of my Herdwick ewes, now has two adorable black lambs. I fetched the trio in and put them into a nice warm shippon and watched. There’s a tup lamb and a little gimmer.

Many of my ewes look as if they are imminent for lambing so I check round the flock often.

I had some visitors and one of them fell in love with one of the cats I am seeking to re-home. My other visitors were a family who have a six-month Border collie called Gizmo and wondered if it could come to me while they are on holiday.

They had come to check out how the pup would accept my other dogs. I was rather impressed with that.

Boo was ecstatic and just wanted to play, and the others seemed fine about it. Brillo firmly put Gizmo in his place but in half-an-hour, he had settled in.

The couple that rescued McWoof came with the gift of dog blankets and he was overjoyed to see them. They also brought an old sleeping-bag for the dogs to lie on. McWoof decided after they had gone that this needed to be disembowelled but I have managed to dissuade him and now Boo is fast asleep on it.

The next morning it was foggy and I went out at first light to check on the lambs. Up in the top corner of the top field was a Jacob ewe with two handsome Jacob tup lambs.

As I was checking round for any other imminent arrivals, I delighted in watching a curlew flying up from the meadow and circling round before landing again. I think they are nesting there so I shall avoid that area if I can.

I have been asked to join a group of volunteers doing a rubbish collection on the road sides. They have been doing this for some years and some have been recognised for it, with invitations to a garden party at Buckingham Palace.

Not for them the litter-strewn streets of the city. The council has neither the time nor the money to clear up rubbish, so this group of mainly retired locals make sure that this is a pleasant place to visit. It is just another example of the Big Society.

There have been some lovely days this week. As I drove up the dale just as it was getting to half-light one evening, a sunset sky was beautifully reflected on the river. It was quite stunning and I wished I had a camera.

The views across the hills have been spectacular and on a good day I can see the most distinct details of the many lovely features that make my life worthwhile.

At night, I can see in the distance the lights of Skipton and beyond, or I can gaze in a reverie at the stars which always make me feel quite humble.

Nature can be very cruel, as the Japanese have found. But it can be glorious too.