Not just around here, but around the world. Watching the news today, it seems like we are going to be facing inflation in food prices, based on problems with the wheat harvest. I thought wheat = bread to start with, but then I listened some more and realised that no, wheat = a whole lot more than just bread! Flour will obviously be affected but the knock-on effect will be far wider - the price of animal/chicken feed will have to rise in proportion as well, which will then impact on egg/chicken/meat/milk prices, I should think, and perhaps pasta too. So Russia has extended its ban on exporting wheat, keeping it for its domestic market, the floods in Pakistan are also causing shortages of food, and the weather here is making the harvest a challenge; I can hear a combine harvester still out in the fields at the back of the house here now. If it isn't raining, the combines are out and about, and they keep working into the night. I have just read in the newspaper that a farmer left a trailer of wheat half-full in his field at 2am, and someone stole most of the wheat from the trailer and abandoned the trailer in a layby a few miles away. That wheat stolen was worth £1200, and represents a significant proportion of that farmer's income that he can't afford to lose.
The FH and I had a sort through the freezers today and were pleased with what we recorded as being in there. There are loads of plums, berries, stewed apples, green beans, broad beans, asparagus, peppers, peas, strawberries, gooseberries, cherries, broccoli, cauliflower, tomato sauce a la GTM's recipe, HM cakes, bread, rolls, rhubarb, chickens (home butchered as well as bought), sausages, mince, sausagemeat and frozen puff pastry to make sausage plait, ice cream, stewing steak, ratatouille.....gosh, I can't think what else - tonnes of stuff! We realised that we really don't need to buy any fruit and veg at all for weeks. We don't NEED to, but this isn't the kind of fruit to put in lunchboxes, so I will have to buy some apples or oranges for that, but not for a while as I have a stash in the fridge. We obviously have loads of meat, too. So, after all that, I went to Tesco and stocked up the storecupboard with flour, sugar, pasta, tinned this and that, loo roll, etc - all my store staples, so that I am hoping I can get away without any major shopping trips at all this month as we make a concerted effort to eat from the freezers. It is only because UJ and HC give us fruit and veg, as well as the FH's friend B, and we grow our own, that we have all this bounty.
I was thrilled and very surprised that the Family and Friends Railcard that I ordered just yesterday arrived this morning, and in the same post, all the tickets for our October trip north. Given that there are four of us travelling, with seat reservations, there is a BIG wadge of tickets, but they came so quickly! You can't beat that for service. We are travelling north from Peterborough, straight through to Aberdeen, then changing for Forres. When we come back, though, we are going from Forres to Inverness, changing for Edinburgh and then changing again for Peterborough. I am pleased as we will see the beautiful Scottish scenery in the morning during the return journey - so good vibes for the weather up there on the 30th October, please!
School has gone well again today, and the girls are both in bed now. The EFG has an early start for a gym course in Cambridge in the morning - she and the FH will be leaving here at about 8am, I think. The YFG and I will be here, and I will be filing all the papers I have on the office floor tonight! I'm off now to read the latest issue of the Home Farmer magazine whilst enjoying a cup of tea. Night, all!
Shed of the year 2017.
4 hours ago