Tuesday, 22 September 2009

Henhouse horror

I keep a few bantam hens in a run at the end of the garden. They lay beautiful little eggs that are so much nicer than shop ones, and they are endearing creatures. They are very much a sociable species, and their interactions and behaviour can be a hoot. Bantam keeping is a good ME hobby, generally requiring no great commitment in time or effort.

But, this last weekend I noticed that the ladies had little visitors in the coop - the dreaded red mite. These tiny bloodsuckers breed very quickly, and affected poultry can weaken and perish in very short order. Much frantic cleaning followed, and an amount of creosote was sloshed onto the house. The creosote had been sitting in the back of my shed for years. Nowadays, creosote cannot be legally sold to householders as it is considered to be carcinogenic. However, whilst householders cannot buy creosote in 5 litre batches, it remains legal to sell the stuff to professional users in quantities greater than 20 litres. Confused? I know that I am.

Creosote kills red mite, so my problem is over, and the legalities really don't bother me.


Sorry for the absence, but life on my side of the screen has been rather hectic of late. Foiled house moves, health issues and life in general have all conspired to keep me otherwise occupied.

In any event, I hope I've hit on an idea (hat tip to my sister here) that might allow me to generate something of an income whilst leaving me able to cope with the ME. I'm planning to train as a proofreader, through a distance learning course offered by Dumfries College, and a day-long course in Edinburgh; I hope this will offer some networking possibilities.

I'm really quite enthusiastic about this idea; I can work from home at times I set myself. My previous job contained a degree of the work, and I'm a pernickety old pedant about language.