The midgie season is over and so those in the know have been visiting. There were 50 people on the croft on Sunday, all a bit of a shock. I'm not used to talking so much. They mostly seemed inspired by what one described as a 'subversive lifestyle', and another as 'proof of what's possible'. The big crowd was followed by a visit from my parents. Despite frantic cleaning of all the sheds, my mother still looks at me as if I'm defective. She wishes I would live a normal life, in a house, with a spare bedroom she could stay in. Shed-dom is just not good enough. It's abnormal. I can see it's embarrassing to her. What I see as freedom, she perceives as insecurity. I just don't know how to demonstrate to her that this 'extremely detached' 10 hectare house feels more like home than any other dwelling I've ever occupied.
Weather-wise all the visitors have had a treat - glorious sunny weather, calm and warm enough to stroll about in short sleeves, and then starry cold nights. The trees are getting a chance to blaze up - some of the rowans are going bright berry red and the aspens are goldening. Every time I step outside I'm brought up short by the colours. It never fails to make me smile. There is only one downside of this season: lots of little furry beasties are looking for somewhere warm, dry and snuggly to spend the winter. Sheds are just perfect. I came into the studio yesterday morning and someone, something, had scoffed all the winter salads growing in pots, chewed on my skype earphones, gnawed off the handle of my laptop bag and even, for goodness sake, excavated the lining of my furry slippers. A loathesome vole, a mischievous mouse or a maybe just a shivering shrew. But whoever the beastie is, it's not timorous enough by half.