Listening to: Breakin' Down the Walls of Heartache (Edwin Starr)
Drinking: Brazilian lager
Weather: bright, showers, wind turning to the north
Reading: Attila (William Napier)
Mrs Trainee Pig Farmer drove off the ferry last night, exhaust on the trusty Vauxhall Astra scraping the ground, axles straining, but diesel engine purring (those things are bomb-proof and I'll fight anyone who says different).
I could just about spot her peering out through a gap in all The Stuff she had brought from the south. We said our hellos and then she set off in the direction of the farm (not hard as it's a straight road from the pier) with me following. She only just remembered where the turn into our lane was, squealing the tyres as she threw the Astra into the (very narrow) entrance.
The car was heaving with The Stuff, the Ikea logo all too frighteningly visible (don't you just love a quiet romantic evening together, just you, her and a set of Allen keys).
Happily, much of The Stuff proved to be edible, Sal obviously fearing the ferry crews' work-to-rule would leave us cut off for weeks on end.
Once unloaded, I forced the larder, fridge and freezer doors shut and we settled down to tea/dinner/supper. It was, to be honest, a bit weird. Having had nobody much to talk to for two months I was a little stuck for words. Mrs TPF was absolutely banjaxed, having risen at 4.30 to leave our friends' home in Dunfermline in time to reach the midday ferry to Orkney at Scrabster.
She was snoring as soon as her head hit the pillow and, while she has been settling back in today, she's back in bed now while I persuade pizza dough to rise and fill the house with garlicky smells.
Of course, I had done the usual flash around with the mop and hoover, got a decent tea ready, made sure the cushions were tidy, dogs combed, goldfish polished and so on. Actually, that's not true, we don't have a goldfish.
It wasn't perfect, naturally, but it was no big deal, Mrs TPF being one of life's nore laid-back characters, but I think she was a bit shocked when she remembered how cold and damp the house can be.
Sal has a knack for nest-building and already has plans that would never have occurred to me to make the place cleaner, cosier and generally more user-friendly. (My view is that only complete gutting and putting back together will do that, but that will come in time). So expect scatter cushions in the pig shed any day now.
This reunion is going to be short-lived, however, as I'm catching the morning boat on Thursday to head south for a couple of weeks, visiting The Boy in Devon and my daughter (nickname pending) in the Midlands. One of these days we must get organised.
FOOTNOTE: Good news! The biggest Ikea item proved to be something Sal had picked up for Mr D, so all we've got are handy storage jars, lampshades and so on. The Allen keys can stay where they are.