We've finally reached December, seemingly the 1st December is officially the start of winter, well it didn't disappoint. Yet more snow fall over night, inches of the stuff and it was nowt like letting up. Blizzards were pretty much the order of the day.
Shep set off to feed and find sheep. The sheep I've been feeding for the elderly local sheep keeper were in trouble this morning. Unfortunately I didn't take my camera (it is a bulky blighter). There are two fields of sheep belonging to the elderly person. One field has ewes with a tup amongst them the other has the hoggs in it. It was the hoggs which caused concern.
The wind had blown and more blown during the night, not only blizzards but drifting too. These hoggs had found themselves blown against the wall and although not happed up (covered with a drift) they were very close to it (would have made a good record shot - never mind!) The field they were in had very little shelter from the art of the wind and the only option left to Shep was to get them into the field where the ewes were. There are now hoggs running with the tup as well, not good but that's life, their safety is more important.
Why is it not good to have hoggs with the tup? Well, these are this years female lambs, once spaened (weaned) we call them hoggs. They will not be a year old until next lambing time. Basically they are teenagers, young teenagers at that. If hoggs are fit it is quite possible they will come a tupping therefore it is wise to keep them away from the tups. Unfortunately for this small flock this is no longer an option, the hoggs could not be left in the other field, eventually they may well have got happed up and even died. Lets hope they keep their tails pinned down. http://blog.tarset.co.uk/2009/12/under-age-sex.html
After that slight excitement I headed off to find the sheep which the farmer in the next valley wasn't able to get to. I found them hale and hearty which was a huge relief, a big bale of hay is to be dropped off this afternoon (by a Tarset farmer) apparently and then I can feed them. They are taking no hurt at the moment so that is good. It was then a matter of flying home and getting in the car and off to town.
The roads were atrocious and to be honest I would never have considered travelling the 25 miles to town on a day like this unless I had to. We had to. The blizzards were unrelenting for the majority of the journey, the car reached 30 miles an hour on a rare occasion but even though we were heading away in bye the roads were lying white with falling snow as we went, fortunately the other half does have a 4wd car which was a great help.
In many ways it was a long few hours, I found myself chewing my finger nails whilst speed shopping at the supermarket, groceries needed out bye and their neighbours further out were quite a priority. The main priority though was to get the visa applications into the post. The lady behind the counter at the post office couldn't have been more helpful, she made the job so easy and gave us sound advice. All the time in town it was snowing heavily, a need to get done and head home was overwhelming.
The dentist was closed due to the weather which meant stopping off at the doctors surgery on our return for the other half to get a prescription for a possible tooth abscess, then the chemist to get the prescription and finally home. A huge relief to pull up at our house in one piece with groceries on board for those living further out than ourselves and sound in the knowledge that we will hopefully get our visas back in the post before we depart on our holiday at the end of the month. The other half was also relieved that he may now get some relief from his tooth!
Once again there had been a fair covering of snow in the few hours we had been missing, at least four inches of the fluffy stuff.