And where to start?
On the eve of the Solstice (the Winter one, for the benefit of those up in the Northern Hemisphere who have just enjoyed their longest day), my wife had a phone call just as I was preparing the evening meal – her father had been admitted to hospital with a collapsed lung.
I had to stay home and feed dogs, horses and myself whilst my wife went off to the hospital.
Merry Solstice! There's only one thing worse on this day than visiting somebody in hospital and that's being the person visited. My father in law seemed quite cheerful, all things considered.
Flash! Bang! Not long after we arrived home, we experienced a lightning strike that was far too close for comfort. The horses spooked and the dogs were terrified. A hail storm (small stuff, luckily) along with a lot more rain; looks like our drought has finally broken.
Amidst all this drama, I discovered that my rain gauge seems to have been putting out some very dubious data. I bought this model specifically because it was advertised as having better resolution than a cheaper model – which now does not appear to be the case. Luckily I am able to adjust my historical data, which I will do once I have gone out there and done some calibration to work out exactly what the wretchèd thing is really registering. On the positive side, we have been getting a lot more rain than I though.
Still not done – more drama unfolds. My wife advised me this morning that the mains water pump was making "funny noises", as well it may, as it was merrily trying to pump air. The 1,000 litre break tank was completely empty; no signs of leakage, so it must have been pumped empty. This means one of two things: one – the pump had pumped the water somewhere (where?) or two – we had received no mains water for two or three days. I am still waiting for the tank to fill sufficiently that I can re-prime the pump and get things back to normal so that I can investigate further.
Lots of Solstice Fun – all of which I could have done without.