Sunday, June 24

Unknown territory

Half-time: 5 – 0.


About 100,000 filled the streets of central London yesterday for an anti-Brexit march, demanding a people’s vote – aka a second referendum.

In 2002 around 400,000 people from across the country marched through central London in a protest against the ban on hunting with dogs. Crowds were so big it took people queuing at the start of the official route more than six hours to filter through, according to police.

Doesn’t get much better

Have been outside early this past couple of days, taking care of chores before it becomes too warm (and the footy kicks off). Blue skies … our own private aviary – yard is full of birds hard at work feeding nests, non-stop twittering. Ponies and cattle asleep in the shade.

Friday, June 22

Well done Nigeria

I’ve got to have one of those shirts. Listened to the first half on the wireless in the barn … just when you think you’ve done your bit, someone arrives with three truckloads that need humping and stacking.

Workplace bullying

There are valid reasons. I’ve spend all morning driving up and down the M5 sorting problems. Even when you spell out instructions in capital letters, the scope for fuck ups is endless. Thank god we’re a Christian country or I’d have the lot of ’em beheaded.

Thursday, June 21


Am watching the plucky Aussies attempt to overcome a bunch of technically superior Danes, appreciating the hopes and aspirations of so many are wrapped up in the outcome. It’s a game…people take life too seriously. Neighbourhood activists, for instance, have a coach booked to take them to London for this weekend’s ‘March for a People’s Vote’. By activists I mean the sort of dipsticks that post selfies of themselves arm-in-arm with that dog-turd A.C. Grayling (similar age group and alma mater). They’re very much the minority around here, albeit a vocal and influential one. So much so our whore of an MP has consistently rebelled against the government line in an effort to maintain her cosy sinecure. Entertaining stuff that it is, it doesn’t keep me awake at night.

Wednesday, June 20

UK's 12th ranked university

Exeter university has apologised after a quote from the German general and military theorist known as the Desert Fox was used to motivate staff and students. A spokesman said the staff member who selected the quote “did not know who Rommel was" and the information was taken from a free-to-use website (rather than the film featuring that nice Mr Mason and his wife Miss Daisy). I thought the only history kids were taught these days was the second world war?

Blowing the cobwebs away

On the top of an extremely misty moor before breakfast, helping neighbour track down livestock. Among the larks and stonechats, a dramatically-coloured fiery brantail (redstart), giving it large in that melancholy verse. Then to town: fresh bread for lunchtime bruschetta, pork ribs for tonight’s barbecue.

Tuesday, June 19

Square eyes

Three televised matches every day AND Royal Ascot.

Winning start ... it's all downhill from here

As we are busy I celebrated England’s win with several alcohol-free lagers, falling asleep at ten and waking at seven. Must have needed a kip. The Three Lions win against Les Aigles de Carthage was not without incident and kept us on the edge of our seats – a work in progress, as they say. Football is the ultimate win-win, legitimising both national fervour and ancient prejudices rivalries. That we are happy to share a beer afterwards is testament to the power of football over politics. Fogbound this morning, literally rather than metaphorically. Appears the murk is with us for a couple of days.

Monday, June 18

Always look on the bright side

Like many I switch on the morning news and immediately turn it off again. If it’s not the EU facing an existential migrant crisis, NHS stealth taxes, or the usual bleeding hearts, it is more knavish tricks designed to wreck Brexit. Am embarrassed to admit I chuckled over the story of a man being crushed to death by his own mother’s coffin after trying to push it up a bamboo ladder at her funeral. Brought back memories. Thank god for the World Cup, which, touch wood, appears to be going well – perhaps I was a bit hasty in my criticism of the hosts. Of course England haven’t played yet, though all of us are hardwired for disappointment.

Sunday, June 17

Another good game

Nice enough rib of veal for lunch. As with anything immature, however, these cuts require a healthy dose of rosemary or sage to make them palatable. Saved today in part by sautéed potatoes and my go-to Crozes-Hermitage. Congrats to Serbia: case of a good big ’un always beating a good little ’un. You have to admire the Patrice Evra look – straight out of Live and Let Die. Unfortunately Eniola Aluko isn’t Jane Seymour.