Today has been a beautiful day outside. It is very different from the very mixed weather of the last 7 days and absolutely perfect for Armistice Day and this significant centenary.
Watching the pictures from the Cenotaph in London it appeared to be the same bright, crisp, optimistic autumn day as here. David and I went to memorial in Saint Cadou but, sadly, we were the only people there and had our own period of reflection and remembrance. A new, official looking, wreath had been laid suggesting there had been a ceremony there recently so possibly the commemorations were taking place in Sizun rather than our own village but foolishly we hadn’t done our research.
The memorial does show however the impact of the 2 wars even on our small village. There were considerably more casualties during The Great War than WW2 and a number lived in Kergudon itself (marked), although we understand this refers to the hamlet rather than our buildings. As everywhere else the frequency of the same family name on the memorial shows just how devastating the war was to entire families. There are also a number of family names which are very familiar and still in the village – our neighbours are Pouliquens.
During the Second World War we know that Germans were billeted in the house called The Old Presbytery, opposite Saint Cadou’s church, and the old weathercock is in the Sizun museum with the bullet holes where it was used as unofficial target practice.
Work for me has been dictated by the very changeable weather and I have not been able to progress the new man shed. When it was dry I continued to clear the copse of trees that I had started the week before which has made a huge difference to that small area of garden. It always looks more impactful if you compare to the pictures before on previous blogs. With the decheterrie (tip) having more limited opening hours in the winter months, most of which seem to coincide with when David takes the car to work, I change between jobs if I can’t empty the trailer.
As such, this week I started clearing another unkempt area of the garden which was becoming more and more overgrown – the old chicken run. We have never cleared the old run or removed the broken down fence so, over the last 4 years it too has become overgrown with bramble, knot weed and sycamore saplings. We do use it occasionally to deposit garden rubbish prior to having a bonfire.
Our last big fire was earlier in the year in May after which I optimistically, and probably naïvely, thought that I could strim through the rest of the area and then keep it under control with mowing. However, on closer look, I needed to manually clear the large amounts of waste that we had dumped there which had never made it onto a fire; remove the fairly sizable trees which have started to grow and make an effort to remove the old chicken wire.
This has proven so far to be a very slow job although I suspect I am doing it probably more thoroughly than is absolutely necessary as I am removing as much root of the weed as I can. Of course all that is doing is making another large pile of garden waste that I will have to burn when we have another dry spell – which, if the forecast is right might be in the next 10 days after Tuesday.
Foolishly I didn’t take a before photo, other than this one which was after we had the last bonfire in May, but you get the idea. The current state was taken today.
I mentioned in last week’s blog that David had again led the warm-up to the annual Taulé to Morlaix 10K and I promised pictures. Please see the attached video:
All other activities have been inside when it has been particularly wet and windy, as it was especially on Friday although, oddly, despite the large and deep depression which passed to the west of Ireland it was not a named storm. I’ve never really thought naming a depression was really necessary but if the Met Office is going to do it they need to be consistent about it!
Some of those indoor activities, for David at least, have been more Christmas cooking so the house has smelt amazing. He has now cooked 7 Christmas cakes in total to my Mum’s old recipe (which is so good it is framed and hanging in our kitchen!) as well as made lots of chutney and piccalilli for us to enjoy and gift to guests staying with us over Christmas.
Next week, again if the, very positive, forecast is right, I will be able to progress the man shed and get the frame built – exciting stuff.