Wednesday, 20 May 2009

Wednesday 20th May 09

A quite relaxing day, in many ways. Gill went to Art and I eventually went to the allotment with some chitted potatoes and got two rows in! Hurrah! I also pulled out more nettles, by hand (there really isn't any point wearing gloves as part of the love of gardening is being in contact with the soil and plants) and deconstructed a compost heap which fertilised the potato rows.

Home for lunch and then spent the afternoon with Gill, before she went out to have a stitch removed, left from her gall-bladder removal, this one got left behind! I went to school to get our youngest, and took a large plastic sack to collect a dose of school fruit waste. Came back with over 30Kg... would have been thrown away if I didn't rescue it. I wonder when they are going to address the composting situation? I've heard nothing since a 'Health and Safety' **** said 'composting isn't allowed in schools' and my working compost bin was removed.

Gill came home, minus a 1cm long piece of thread in a jar. Greatly relieved! She skimmed the small ads in the Press and saw someone was selling a unicycle for £15, so I rang up and it sounded fine... except it was up in Wigginton, about 5 miles North of here. I decided to go and get it, so cycled up through Haxby, popped into the Cemetery to see a tree I planted in memory of a friend Lin. The tree and plaque I bought were not there. I was a bit upset, but wrote down the details of the people to contact, and will write to them both, just to see if it has been moved...

I then cycled on to where the young man was selling the unicycle. He'd bought a bigger one, with handles on the saddle, to catch when falling or jumping off. I chatted with the whole family, and demonstrated unicycling backwards, paid the asking price (a bargain!) and cycled away with it in my trailer, down the Wigginton Road this time. Near Clifton Moor I found a pallet in the hedge (a rather larger piece of litter than most I pick up!) so brought that back too, coming along the cycle track from near the Hospital all the way to Hull Road, where I picked up a sack of biodegradables from Freshways, and as usual, some friendly banter with the gentlemen who work there.

Home for some squash soup, which was delicious! Had a couple of bread rolls with it... and that was a perfect tea. A relaxing evening, but starting to get ready for going away tomorrow.

Nice bath with woodstove water.... ahhhhhhhhhhhhh!


Anonymous said...

Hhmmmm - cooking with wood in hot weather - don't they do that in Africa??

Remember that you can only do what you do because the rest of York are burning fossil fuels like there's no tomorrow (literally).

Compost John said...

Firstly, I light the stove, cook and heat washing up water, and let it die down. This is usually in the evening, when it is not that warm, but sometimes first thing in the morning. Remember, we don't use any central heating at all.

When it is too warm for the stove, we too use fossil fuels for some cooking (gas rings) and we use £70 worth of gas a year for cooking things like this, and in the oven, such as cakes and quiches, which are impossible to do on a stove top, plus occasional hot water for showers etc. I think it's a good balance, £70 worth of gas/year, 5 tonnes of renewable wood/year.

I don't agree with your analysis that I can only use renewable fuels for cooking and heating because others are using fossil fuels. This is a non-sequitur. I recently checked with an expert on forests and carbon flux (Andreas Heinemeyer) whether this country could use more wood for heating on highly efficient woodstoves like he and I both have, as several (ignorant) people have said that we don't have enough wood in this country for a majority of people to switch wholly or partly to this fuel. His response was that if we insulated our homes properly, then yes, we could ALL use locally grown renewable wood for some or all of our heating and cooking. He described what he's seen in Scandinavia, where everybody has well insulated homes and a majority have woodstoves.

I do agree that people who are wasting fossil fuels right now are not mindful of the needs of future generations. I sometimes think of it as 'shitting on the not yet born'.

Maybe, anonymous, you could explain what you meant with your comment? And put your name, please, I do like to know a name to say hello to!!!


Compostwoman said...

I must admit I tend not to bother replying to anon posters, unless they have a good reason why they are anon.....

Sounds like a good and productive day John. Hope Gill is OK after GB surgery..I had that done some years back...not a pleasant op!

Compost John said...

Agreed, Compostwoman. I don't publish very many comments, there are plenty of idiots out there who get their kicks from taking the piss and posting rude stuff. But I'll publish anything inteligent, relavent or interesting, even if I disagree with it or is critical of me. But then I mount a robust defence! haha!!!
(and I know that sounds like climbing on top of some strong wooden panels, but I've got to keep my vocabulary lubricated, use it or lose it!)

Gill had keyhole surgery yonks ago, I think it was Jan or Feb (better check me blog!) and they left a stitch in by accident, which has been bothering her. Much better by keyhole, used to be a huge op, now, in overnight only, up and bouncing around in days... well, Gill was!

Good to hear from you. Keep up with your composting!

Anonymous said...

John, in response to your robust defence - if 'IF's were horses, beggars would ride!

I'm talking about the situation on the ground. Obviously if we get into 'IF' territory,
then if every home in this country was super-insulated and airtight with heat recovery
ventilation, then they wouldn't need any heating systems and wood could be put to much better uses which would sequester the carbon for long periods.