We've celebrated various Rum residents birthdays this last week - birthdays here tend to come in clutches. We had a lovely evening over at Harris on the south coast of the island barbecuing over a fire from gathered driftwood. Sadly that was one of the midgier evenings so we were dancing not to the music we'd taken over with us but to avoid the little black monsters!
Market Day is up and running and it's great seeing the different arts, crafts, makes and bakes on offer from talented islanders. I've been gathering as many raspberries as I can and turning them into jam although we seem to be eating it quicker than I can jar and sell it! Raspberry jam really is very delicious... the herbs in the herb spiral are doing well and there are several tomato plants with fruit starting to look red rather than green. The strawberries seem to be all but done for this year and the soft fruit is all looking healthy in terms of growing and looking happy in the cage but not so good in terms of producing much fruit this year. We've been eating peas for weeks along with salad and the onions are looking almost ready to harvest, along with the broccoli and cabbages. We harvested the first lot of tatties a few weeks ago and there are a few more ready to be dug up soon.
We've been on some great ranger events lately - the kids went along to a biodiversity walk and we all went to a splendid foraging afternoon with a cook up afterwards of all the gathered up goodies. Seafood galore in the shape of winkles, muscles and clams along with some orache and plantain, followed up with some wild raspberries.
Aside from soft fruit I have done very little in the way of getting out foraging this year, I didn't even gather elderflowers this year. I do have my eye on a fair few hazelnuts which look like they just might come to something this year though.
Exciting news of the week was that the duck egg which Scarlett very hopefully put under a semi broody bantam has hatched! The bantam seemed to spend as much time off the egg as she did on it and Scarlett sprayed it with water several times to keep the humidity up but we were not really very expectant, particularly as duck eggs need incubating for 28 days while bantam eggs only take 19 days. But to our delight Mrs Bantam has been out and about the last 3 days proudly leading her 'baby' around. Davies and Scarlett have christened it 'Chuckling'