Monday, August 07, 2017

You just can't get the mangelwurzels these days

We last went to the Gower Show many years ago when our children were small. It's the local agricultural show held on the first Sunday in August and this year we decided to go along and see how it had changed.

I think it's bigger but only in the sense of having more stands selling things. Mostly vaguely agricultural type stuff but also sweets, crafts, double glazing, agas, and the other odds and ends you see in farmers' markets. And there was a huge food area but not one of them was selling hot pasties. (So we had to settle for tea and cake from the WI tent.)

But the proper part of the show I can't help feeling has shrunk. There weren't many pigs entered and not that many cattle. Plenty of sheep though. And whereas before I remember being able to walk in between the stalls we were kept away by fencing this time. I suppose it's hygiene and health concerns but it felt different.

Again I remember there being sheepdog trials, and birds of prey, as well as the horse-shows. This year we had what was called terrier racing that involved dogs chasing a bit of plastic bag on a string. The dogs were all volunteered by members of the public and generally made a complete hash of it so it was entertaining. We didn't take George as the smells (of other animals and food) would have driven him to distraction but we tried to imagine what his reaction would have been had we let him off his leash and told him to chase a plastic bag. He doesn't like plastic bags; they frighten him. Plus he's lazy. 

Then it was time for the Welsh Axemen.


In about eight minutes this block was transformed ...

into a beautiful seat for a child.

The traditional way of cutting down tall trees involved cutting slices into the trunk and inserting a wobbly board (not the proper name) for the axeman to balance on in order to cut another higher slice to stick his wobbly in until he has worked up the tree to a point at which he can begin felling. Danny, this axeman, only used two boards and that was precarious and scary enough.
 When we were courting I had a maroon Morris Traveller  and Husband had a blue MGB, just like these in the vintage section





When it came to the animals I was rather taken with this magnificent specimen. 
Not forgetting this delightful little face.
And while it was good to finally discover what a mangelwurzel looks like ...
it was this sign that most amused me.



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