Biggar and better

What a difference!

After a simple ~25 mile bus ride, southwest from Edinburgh, I alighted in the small village of Biggar. After a phone call announcing my arrival, Gordon rode the 3.5 miles from the farm to pick me up in one of 3 or 4 old Land Rovers.

A classic little farm, it’s around 15 acres, with Hebridian Sheep, chickens, gardens, and plenty of good projects!

View from the farm
View from the farm

Immediately upon arriving at the old stone house, I met Juliet and we tramped over to where the new sheep were and gave them some shots.

In contrast to the last spot, here I have a little apartment all to myself. Julie already had a fresh loaf of bread cooking for me and I only need to give notice when it is time for another. Yum! Hot bread and homemade jam is a fine start.

We went to the supermarket and I stocked up on whatever I wanted, as I cook my own lunch and breakfast and then join them for dinner. Eggs are straight from the chickens and plentiful.

I guess relative to the previous helpers, I have my shit somewhat together and they were pleased that I could build things with little supervision. The first couple of days were spent finishing the open shed at the top of the property.

One of my walls
One of my walls

I finally got a start at getting rid of those computer hands and got a good workout.

But the real fun began a few days ago when we starting digging 12 post holes, each 3.5 ft. in rocky soil for the 20’x50′ wool shed we are building. Now this has been a real workout. Post hole digging is hard enough when you have soil, but here we have layers of rock, crumbly thank god, and have to use a heavy, 6ft steel bar and smash away the layers, 2 inches at a time. I am painfully sore right now, but in that good bootcamp kind of way.

I have a ‘before’ photo but it’s a boring field. I will post a pic when the posts are put.

Between that and the hilly 3.5 mile bike ride to town, I have a ways to go fitness-wise but happy to be on the path.

Weather has been better than Harris but still lots of overcast and rain.

Saturday was spent at the Biggar Agricultural Fair, where the cows and sheep were on display, along with tractors and other farming things. But I did get a line on a chocolate maker down the road that I need to visit. It was a fun day, meeting the locals, seeing my new little friends/neighbors on their horses and getting to hold the amazing owl!

I promised the kids I would teach them to make s’mores. Turns out that no one here has ever heard of graham crackers, let alone sell them, and Hersheys is nowhere to be found. So my dad is going to send me a s’more package and then it will be roasting galore.

So off to a great first week here in Biggar. I am looking forward to getting the posts in and doing some good building.

I am going to take a couple days next week to explore old Abbeys (and the chocolate maker!) and should have good pics next week.

Sunrise on the farm
Sunrise on the farm

2 comments

  1. Good stuff Don –keep it coming!

    Meanwhile, the sheep of Scotland had better grow eyes in the back of their heads…

  2. Don what are you up to lately? Please update your blog and post some more pictures.

    We miss you,

    -ScottR