Posted by Tania Kindersley.
There is the beginning of a low, persistent rain. I stare out of the window, willing it on, thinking of the thirsty flowers. Everything is so dry here. The first of the chanterelles appeared last week, and this evening I went out looking for them, and they had gone. The most promising clump has shrivelled away to nothing. I assume it can only be because of the arid conditions. I had been dreaming all afternoon of a chanterelle omelette, and I had to make a shiitake one instead, which is not the same at all.
We did see one of the young deer, though. Last time I saw him, a couple of weeks ago, he was not much bigger than the dogs. Now he has grown into a fine, sturdy fellow of perhaps ten hands. He is bright chestnut, a vivid flash of amber against the deep green trees. He bounded out of the woods, paused for a moment to stare at us, and then leapt on, moving in great arcing jumps. One last flash, and he was gone.
The dogs stood stock still and watched him. The one thing I have been able to train them to do is not to chase the deer. A keeper I knew used to tell me blood-curdling tales of mother deer defending their young by splitting a dog's skull open with their front hooves.
Mushrooms, nil. Deer, one. It was a pretty good result, really.
Here are some pictures of the garden and round about, before the rain came:
I always forget to link to other people, especially Sarah, and now I can't link to her at all because of The Times' paywall. Today I shall remember, because my friend Terence Blacker has an excellent article about Cuba and moral relativism here.
I am always astonished by moral relativists. It's like when you meet someone who has absolutely no charm at all, and never tried to get any; it's so odd, it takes you a few minutes to work out what it is. To say Cuba is marvellous because of the healthcare and the literacy rate, which people on the Left (who should be my people) often do, is to say that it's fine to lock up librarians and university professors and trannies and poofs because the kids can read and the doctors are models of efficiency. It's also hideously patronising to the Cubans themselves, as if they don't deserve, or don't need, or could not cope with democracy. Don't worry about that pesky lack of freedom of expression; look at your lovely, shiny hospital.
That's quite enough ranting for one Saturday. I shall go back to contemplating the rain.
Thank you again for all your wonderful comments over the last week. Have a very happy weekend.