I was lucky to grow up on a farm and for me summer never really began until the fields were cut for hay or silage. Every year as soon as May arrived talk around the breakfast table with my Father and Brother would be about the weather forecast. You need to have a week of dry weather to make good hay so timing was important.
Now I have returned to the country and live in the next farmhouse to were I was born and my brother has taken over the farm when my father passed away.
Last week my brother came to visit me and we sat around my kitchen table and looked online at the weather forecast, and yesterday he started with the mower.
I adore the fact that I can see him working from my kitchen window. We had a picnic lunch together sat in the middle of the field and watched the red kites swooping for food and fighting with the crows.
Red kites have only returned to this area in the last few years, my Father adored them and once took my mother on a 100 mile round trip just to show her some. Sadly he never lived to see them fly over his own land, but i know he would have been delighted.
It was a simple thing but touched me deeply, and now I can declare that summer has begun.