Sue Woodcock: Storm clouds may gather but the rhythm of my life is constant

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Paddy the pub dog has settled in well and he and Boo are causing havoc as they play energetically everywhere.

I made the mistake of leaving them in my bedroom and came back to find that they had hidden the duvet and a pillow in the bathroom and had gone through the socks in my dirty clothes basket. All seemed to be in one piece.

When the dogs come back in from outside they are covered in grass seed, not to mention the mud they have been able to find in the mire.

Paddy took a liking to a particular dog toy and guarded it jealously so it will return to his home at the pub with him.

The two cats who arrived with him have the run of my front bedroom and, after an initial period of grave suspicion, became quite friendly and asked for cuddles by the end of the week. I even managed to get them in their cat baskets to go home.

I went up to clip the remaining two pet sheep belonging to my friend up the dale. She had got them in but their combined efforts to escape when I appeared were immediately successful, so I stopped for a cup of coffee.

My friend asked how my house hunting was going and told me about a place I might be interested in. It’s in Bishopdale which I haven’t previously considered. We ended up by going on to the internet to see what was on offer.

I made a few phone calls and then decided to reconnoitre. Bishopdale is a lovely and rather bleak dale with some fine dales scenery and villages. I called in at several hostelries and asked a few questions about what was for sale locally. I drove to a number of villages and generally explored.

I went past Aysgarth Falls which seemed full of tourists. I admired West Burton and several other pretty little hamlets and places in Wensleydale. I found some places that interested me but until I have a figure to work with, that is all I can do. I have interest in my place but nothing has come of it yet.

I have found good homes for most of my sheep, leaving me with three pets who I intend to keep. I am really very fond of them and they are gentle creatures. Should I find somewhere with a bit of land, I may get a few more but I am not looking for too much extra work.

We have had some spectacular thunder storms. I watched in awe as the lightning danced off the hilltops and the thunder shook the very hills.

The rain was siling down to be followed by sunshine and then another deluge. Water gushed in rivulets down into the mire.

The sheep were sensibly taking shelter in the barn. I may not want to pick sheep for my pub quiz team but they are pretty clever at surviving. They seem to know when extreme weather is on the way.

Afterwards, everything was glistening with moisture, and the smell of warm, wet ground and vegetation is exhilarating. My two cats came in sodden and snuggled up by the Rayburn to dry out. Of course, they had to be given extra food to make up for it.

With the sudden changes in the weather comes some spectacular sunsets. Streaks of bright orange and red contrasting with black clouds were replaced by azure skies with white fluffy clouds. Later, the stars twinkled in the summer night sky.

At dawn, I wandered outside and talked to the sheep without the noise of any traffic. Dew sparkled on the grass and the world seemed ready to take on whatever a new day whatever it might bring.

Then I had to go inside and dry off my pyjama bottoms that had been drenched in the long grass. I have always believed that everyone should have a special time to contemplate life. That is mine. By evening I am too tired to think straight.

The phone seldom rings before 8.30am by which time I am (usually) up and running, collecting eggs, feeding the chickens, walking the dogs again. I do like to fill my days, just so long as I am armed with coffee from first light.