Monday, 24 November 2014

Views From Our Smallholding Kitchen Window.


 Hedge man came today with his New Holland tractor and hedge cutting attachment.  He spent a couple of hours knocking the roadside hedges (Blackthorn & Fuchsia) into shape.  The agricultural labourer with his bill hook is no more.  I use to cut the roadside hedges but it's too dangerous on the main road with cars hurtling past at 80 KPH.  Never understood the need for such high speeds in the countryside.  People could be walking on the roads (no pavements or street lights) or cattle could be on the road.
 A picture of a cruiser that came into Bantry Bay in the summer.  They usually dock in Glengarriff and launches take them to the mainland to visit Garnish Island, Glengarriff and coaches take the tourists to Bantry and Killarney.  Glengarriff use to be the holiday destination for literary luminaries including, Thackery, Wordsworth, Shaw and Virginia Woolfe.
 Here's a tall ship that came in recently.  She was like something out of the Onedin Line when she sailed out of the bay with her sails up.  Some times we see oil tankers and other times we look at the fishing boats, yachts and the life boat.  Even the Queen Mary sailed into Bantry bay.  I believe it use to take five days to sail  Ireland or Blighty to America.  Then the jets were invented and the liners are no more. Sad isn't it really?

There you are.  A few pictures of our smallholding and the bay.  Hope you enjoyed them?

10 comments:

  1. Great pictures Dave. P does a lot of hedge cutting like this. In spite of what many people may think, he takes a lot of pride in doing a good job and does not slash and leave. He sharpens the hedger blades regularly and buys a new set every two years. Blunt blades make for a bad job. I enjoyed seeing the Bantry Bay pictures too. Are you far from the Bay?

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    1. Thanks Rachel. It's good to hear that P takes pride in his work and always does a good job. I have seen hedges that have been badly hacked. I heard of one farmer who drives behind the tractor in his car pipping his horn and shouting at the driver to hurry up. Time is money. But you can't rush it can you?

      We are ten minutes walk from the bay. Our summer pasture is on the cliffs above the bay. You can stand at the fence and look down at the water. Thanks!

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  2. Must be good to look out of the window at the bay and see all the shipping activity.

    Yes, a dangerous job hedging with the slasher and bill-hook on a country road.

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    1. Ye Cumbrian it's good to look out of the window at the bay. I often see Irish navy ships and a myriad of other types in the bay. Once saw a whale swimming in the bay.

      The speeds (80 KPH) are crazy. Especially on narrow and winding roads built for horses and carts. We use to walk the cattle up and down the road but now it's too dangerous and motorists spook them. Dairy farmers still walk them on the roads. Wish we had pavements, cycle lanes and lane lights for people to walk on. The joys of country living yet again! Thanks for your comment.

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    2. Yes, some dairy farms (the few that's left) still parade the milkers along the country roads, and some motorists still try to bull their way past a herd of slow-plodding animals, then as so amazed when a cow knocks their wing mirror off.

      Even saw one trying to drive through a flock of sheep, a couple of them jumped onto his car, for which he blamed the farmer, who just told him to be a bit more patient, it might be a stirk next time. Although I doubt if he knew what a stirk was.

      These are back roads with good stock hedges both sides, often barely wide enough to pass 2 cars, can't imagine why anybody would be in such a hurry on these roads, as you say they were made for the horse & cart as well as animal movements.

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    3. Hi Cumbrian. Talking to a dairy farmer yesterday. Said there is a milk surplus at the moment. Looks like all types of farming are feeling the pinch at the moment.

      I think central government could make rural roads safer by reducing speed limits and even putting humps or sleeping policemen in dangerous areas with sign posts. People live along way out of town and they put their foot down because they are on the minutes. I think some people would drive round the supermarket if they could. What happened to scenes from postcards shwing a driver behind an herd of cattle and the caption saying: "Rush hour Ireland?"

      I hate not being able to walk along the main roads because they are unlit, no pavements, overgrown hanging out hedges and crazy speeds. Thanks!

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  3. A McConnel hedge trimmer, I'd put money on him getting parts from my dad as he supplies quite a few Irish contractors.
    I never speed down the lanes. I often think I have to drive slower to account for the idiots. Dad had a lady crash into the back of his tractor wheel once. She was in such a hurry she climbed out of her car and said to dad to pull her car out because she was late for a meeting. Dad just said "your gonna be a bit later now.."

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  4. What a small world, Kev. You will have to ask your dad if he supplies parts to Bantry in West Cork.

    It's good to know you are a considerate motorist Kev. There could be pedestrians on the roads or livestock. Roadkill is another thing that saddens me. I like your dad's answer to the lady. Thanks!

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  5. Your pic of the vessel with tall masts is called WIND SURF. She is a luxury cruise liner with a total passenger complement of 308 & a crew of 163 including 10 massage therapists for more information see http://www.windstar-cruises-luxury-lines.com/windsurf.htm
    and I first saw her on another blog http://kilchoan.blogspot.ie/2014/09/two-views.html

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    1. Thanks Heron for telling us all about WIND SURF. She was incredibly beautiful and looked so graceful sailing a long the bay. I have seen some great cruise liners in Cobh. Have you visited the Titanic visitor centre. It's very good. My mother use to tell me a lot of the American cruise ship liners us to come to Ireland up until the late fifties. Then the Jumbo jets started flying to Shannon. I have read about the Lusitania being torpedoed off the old head of Kinsale. This brought America into the first World War.

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