|Cody finds the grass a bit white and crisp|
|Goldie dozes in the early morning sun|
I had been a bit wary of this saw for various silly reasons. I had killed my previous one as you may have read, part-seizing the engine and damaging the piston through over-work and possibly incorrect fuel/oil mixture. The problem is, I don't know what killed it and I was nervous of doing the same to this one. Being an older type of saw it also has no rubber 'blister' easy-start primer, so you have to pull the cord 4 times on full choke, then drop down to a #2 position to start it, then quickly blip the throttle to remove the choke and put the lever down to #3 (warm running) position. All a bit fraught. Add to that the Main Dealer had told us scary stories of 'modern fuels' having all manner of highly volatile ingredients so you should drain the tank and run the carburettor dry before storing the saw for more than 3 months.
However, I had been out and treated myself to some Kevlar chainsaw trousers, so I could not just give up and buy wood, I had to steel myself and get stuck in. In the event I needn't have worried, the saw started perfectly and ran well, cut beautifully with its new, unworn chain and only needed that little tighten up which all new chains need after a few minutes of running-in. Liz came out and helped with clearing up the logs I was producing as I dropped three smallish (black spruce) trees in the 'Secret Garden', one of which was leaning at a jaunty 45 degree angle anyway. I also took the opportunity to cut up the pile of old door frames ripped from our outbuildings by K-Dub when he replaced the doors. That was a good bit of tidying.
|Goose and Rooster stock|
He was culled out on Wednesday and had a live weight of (what we thought was..) a huge 4.24 kg (9 lb 5 oz). Liz, who already does all the plucking, decided that he was going to be her first go at gutting out and cleaning, so in she went and created an oven ready carcase weighing exactly 3.000 kg (6 lb 9.75 oz) again, we thought impressive and certainly the biggest chicken so far. It's only talking to Mentor Anne since that we learned that these Jersey Giant variety birds are well named - they continue to grow till they are around a year old or more and can reach live weights of up to 15 lbs which must be some impressive bird! We would have had lots of squashed hens around the place looking like they had been steam-rollered! We are now watching his sister who, at 23 weeks is not quite the size of the rooster, but will presumably grow on too. William is going to be asking for a box to stand on so that he can cope. You live and learn.
The bones, combined with those of the La Bresse 'roo' and the recent goose are now bubbling away in our huge stock pot creating what looks like a magnificent stock. The hearts, livers and gizzards are saved in the freezer for later. We don't quite use "every part except the squeal" but we come close.