As yesterday was extremely hot and sunny, we had a barbecue in the evening, followed by bowls of strawberries. Food miles travelled by strawberries: approximately 1 metre. (There’s a large flower pot near the barbecue, and the strawberries therein have really produced nice fruit this year).

We also did a spot of fishing in the pond. The result was four decent-sized carp (around 1kg each). We are going to try putting them in the freezer for a couple of weeks in the hope that this will remove the muddy taste. I’ll report back on the results! After all, during medieval times carp were an important food source; and if they didn’t taste very nice I’m sure they would not have been so popular.

We had also arranged for Mr. M (Neighbour J’s brother) to come and give us a hand in the afternoon with putting the solar panel onto the roof. He’s a woodcutter by trade, and a very helpful chap in general; but we don’t see very much of him so I don’t think he qualifies for his own abbreviation entry in the list to the right!

He arrived just after lunch, followed by T&M. The solar panel was carried from the barn and placed on the ladders without incident. Unfortunately hoisting it up the ladders onto the roof did not go as smoothly. Due to the heat, the bituminous paint with which I had coated the underside of the frame started sticking to the ladders, so it was no easy task sliding it along these. Still, it got there in the end at the cost of a few rope blisters (mine), and the solar panel is now mounted on the roof. It had been up there for less than half an hour when steam started escaping from the connectors at the ends of the copper tubing (there was still some water left in the panel from the pressure testing). The connectors had purposefully not been fully tightened, and were already far too hot to touch! Unfortunately I won’t be able to connect everything up tomorrow as we’re going to a restaurant in Salbris for the annual reunion lunch with LSS’s cousins. Hopefully on Monday! But a heartfelt thanks to both Mr. M and T&M for their assistance.

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