Is a failing of mine - I admit. I am talking of course of the woodburning stove and of loading it with wood. It's actually far too early to be lighting fires - within an hour you end up stripping off and opening doors and windows, but with the pool and sun lounger season now firmly behind us, there is nothing so nice as loading up the fire and settling in for a night of snuggly warmth in front of 'flicky flames' as my friend Judith calls them.
Neil is a bit of a boy scout fire starter - and deeply frowns on my use of firelighters to get the fire going. As far as I am concerned it is a failsafe method of lighting the fire and puts paid to being on your hands and knees staring desolately at a smoking pile of paper and kindling. I tend to buy packs of firelighters when he is not on a shopping trip with me and secrete them around the room in places he never looks.
"Let me do it!!" is his frequent cry, as I go to light the fire and grab the lighters and he proceeds to unload my stack of newspaper, kindling and lighters in favour of his own method - which I'm sure is something of a secret ( like 5 year old moss covered old wisteria sticks or something).
It's just a case of male pride I am sure and I normally let him get on with it, although with his recent liking of walking around in a state of undress perhaps I should ensure the house is as cold as possible!
Here is a picture of Lenny - who has settled in like a dream and has already caught his first mouse. Long may he continue!!