In fact, it was so cold in the night that icicles of condensation froze inside the milking pump, which resulted in a rather frantic mechanical operation and much sighing when i tried to milk and could not. Daisy ate her first breakfast in the milking parlour but without being milked, was led back out to her own room, where she waited quietly with Queenie watching the pump saga with interest. We finally discovered a third set of frozen blockages in the air hose. Once it was fixed she was called back in and had a second breakfast and finally was able to release her gift of milk.
I warmed the pump all day for the afternoon milking but I am terrified of unattended heat-lamps in a barn full of animals, even though they all have an exit, so the 60 pound pump has been hauled in for the night and is resting on the kitchen floor sticking out its feet at inopportune moments to trip us up as we go past. What a performance.
“It’s going to be a long winter.” said Our John disconsolately. He so reminds me of Eeyore sometimes. In fact I call him that sometimes but only when he is reading the paper and I know he is just pretending to listen!
Cold and colder. I think that thermometer says we got down to 18 (-8C) in the night. And it is desperately cold again this morning.
However, there is talk of a slight warming over the next week or so.
EIGHT sleeps until I fly to California on the first leg of the journey. I think I have counted them right this time. I am hopeless with numbers. I need to find books to read as I travel.
I have discovered an interesting new awareness in my reading since I started writing. I seem to be reading on two levels simultaneously. I read what the author wrote and I am also reading how it is written. You would think that this would diminish my pleasure in the reading but in actual fact it has heightened my enjoyment. Lately I am tasting properly the words of other authors, chewing on them and mulling them about as well as reading their stories. But intertwined if you like. I hope that makes sense. I think I am reading as a writer, which means I am learning. Good.
I am reading After You’ve gone Gone by Jeffrey Lent. He pretty much breaks every rule there is but with confidence. And it is beautiful. He relishes language. His love of words and ease with them gives him permission, if you like, to reorder them. Hmm.
Anyway. Today I hand in the draft of my novel to be counted by the Nanowrimo robot counter. A momentous moment. Then we must drive up to Chicago to visit a family in mourning. The surrogate milkers will have their first solo milking this evening. I am trying very hard not to leave them pages and pages of ‘helpful’ instruction!
Have a lovely day.