It’s now September, where has the year gone. To say it’s been a rather strange year is a slight under estimation. But we’re still here, and taking each day as it goes. At the beginning of the year I said I would try and do garden/allotment updates at the beginning and the middle of each month. Everything was going fine until August began.
I did try very hard to film an early August update for you, but if you cast your mind back to then, you may remember the weather was a little on the warm side, it got up to 38 on a few days, and the greenhouses were in the mid to high 40’s.
There I was setting up in the garden, with the very hot sun beating down ready to record another episode of you. I began as usual, but it wasn’t long before the camera suddenly shut off and uttered the words “Camera overheating!” I let the camera cool down inside for a while, and tried a few more times but the same thing happened. By this time the heat was really building and the humidity wasn’t fun either. I tried to film something for you over the course of a few days, but the same thing happened, so I decided it was a non starter.
I then hoped that by the middle of August the heat would subside a little and then I would be able to film a mid August update. But the stormy winds came, and the thunder, lightning and torrential rains, plus a bit of hail mixed in for good measure. So that put pay to any filming as well.
During this time I was working 5 days a week, and the only time I had free to film was the weekends, so if Saturday and Sunday were unsuitable I was screwed.
But here we are in September and weather is much more sensible. It’s had it’s mad 5 minutes for the summer so it’s much easier to get back out in the garden now.
I’m sure you all understand that filming, even a short 15 minute episode for you, takes a good hour, to an hour and a half to film. Shots have to be set up, things have to be in frame, and sometimes I have to do a couple of takes, as well as all the other usual gardening bits of planting, harvesting, weeding etc.
Then there’s the editing, which takes another hour and a half. I love our barn, but during the summer months it gets stiflingly hot upstairs, even with the windows open all the way. We even end up sleeping downstairs at night. So sitting upstairs at my computer editing a video, is not something anyone would be happy to do.
We finally come to the upload speeds where we are. Now I’m sure that many of you wouldn’t even think about this, as you can download and upload what you want without any thought what so ever. But here in the middle of the countryside we aren’t that lucky. The only supplier down our road is BT and all we can get is copper, with upload speeds of 2 or 3! Yes it’s that slow. So we don’t have that, we have an aerial that points the an antenna (or is it the other way round?) some distance away, and we’re lucky if we get double figures. At 5am it goes up to about 20 (I’m still in dozy land at that time), but once everyone is up and about it drops dramatically. An episode of Claire’s Allotment can take about 2 hours to upload, and that’s on a good day.
So hopefully you can see how long it all takes and the difficulties I sometimes have.
I love doing these little updates for you, but sometimes the weather, or time just don’t work in my favour. My family is the most important thing to me, and I work all week and come home exhausted and filthy. Sometimes I just want to sit on the beach on a Sunday afternoon with my kids and husband having a picnic, and watch the waves wash in and out. It resets my mind and gives me time to calm down and just relax.
I know you all look forward to my latest videos, but I hope you appreciate how long they all take to produce and if the next episode is a little later than you expect, I hope you now understand why.
So my moan over, I hope it wasn’t too preachy, but when someone comments saying that it seems I’ve given up making my videos, just because I missed one or two out, that really hurts and gets me upset. I’ve been making these videos for 13 years now, and there are nearly 550 of them. So if you’re getting withdrawal symptoms because I’m a little late with the next episode, you can always watch a couple of old episodes to see you through.
But here’s my Early September video, all fresh and hot off the press.