Monday, 30 January 2012

Mud, Mud, Glorious Mud!

I know I haven't posted for a time, but I have been quite busy (ish) in one form or another.  Since my hand is now back in use, I have been trying to get a few of the jobs done that needed to be done. Plus, although I had given the dogs some good long walks and done some exercises to keep fit whilst the hand was incarcerated  I had lost work fitness, so I have been out for cycle rides.  This has definitely helped in getting me fitter and I've explored quite a lot of the area - taking those lanes I wouldn't normally use.  I must admit if you like off road cycling it's a great area for tracks.

Actually there is an ulterior motive for getting fit and that is skiing - I'm taking the boys again in a couple of weeks time.  Also, whilst my hand was in the cast I took to following a Davina McCall fitness DVD, or as Rosie called it, 'A Sweaty Session with Davina'! And no I was not wearing a leotard and pink fluffy legging as one friend suggested - it was just a rumour!

So what's all this to do with mud?  Well apart from having a great time cycling along muddy tracks getting the bike and myself covered in mud, everything else I've been doing seems to end up with me being covered with mud and it ain't as fun when working in it.

I helped out some people with some fencing and all went quite well.  I had driven around their fields with no problems.  Then in the last hour the heavens opened and that was that - Stuck! Why always at home time? And the people I was helping had gone out to get more materials and were going on else where.  After searching around I found some metal ramps in the stables. Four of these did the trick - once I had dragged them one at a time 100 metres to the field, then rolled on to the first set.  Drove along those onto the next set, got out of the car , moved the 1st set along, got back into the car and moved up on to this set before getting out, pulling the ramps out and dragging them in front, before getting back in the car and moving forward again (I'm sure you get the picture) and so on and so forth, for 100 metres - the ramps getting progressively heavier with MUD and it would have been helpful if the ramps had been anywhere near the same size.  I had to go all the way back to the stables in this fashion and by the end of it I was covered in MUD and soaking wet. Fortunately I had a set of dry clothes. And as always the people turned up just as I got on solid ground and said I could have used the tractor to pull myself out - yes but the keys to the tractor and the car parked in front of it were in your locked house - aaaargh.

Mud , Mud and More Mud
And I've been in more mud for the last couple of weeks - well three days of the week.  With friends, Ian and Marie, we have managed to get ourselves a good supply of future firewood, very cheaply.  The only drawback is we have to cut the trees down, then chop them to length and split the lengths up for logs and get them home.

So day one is a cold, frosty day - with solid ground - perfect.  Since then it has rained and with the rain comes MUD.  So a hard enough task of getting firewood has now become an exhausting trudge wading in MUD and of course the more we walk through it the boggier it gets.  Some very weary bodies are going home at the end of the day.  Tools and clothes are covered in MUD. But at least I haven't got the 4x4 stuck in the field, yet!

I don't think I've ever felled trees in so much MUD and water, plus I never had a bonfire in the middle of a pond before.  But looking on the bright side - we are getting a good supply of firewood and it's getting me fitter, although it doesn't feel like it at times. And there are more, rather large, trees still to come down.  Perhaps next winter when this firewood is keeping us warm I'll look back at these muddy moments with nostalgia. Or perhaps not!

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