"It's almost dark already and we are only five minutes later than yesterday."

"But is has been dull and overcast since mid afternoon. There was heavy rain; see all the puddles."

"Could be a lot of frogs in the road again."

There is still enough light for us not to need the torches as we set off, but it is decidedly gloomy and damp.

"I finished strimming in the orchard and I got the hedge trimmer started with the new spark plugs, but the brake has jammed on. It will either need replacing or bodging."

"Have we got time for a walk? There was a queue all along the M60 slip road so I'm later than I expected."

"If you don't mind eating later, it's already 19:20."

We find the torches and set off. It will definitely be dark before we get back. 

The sun has already set and the last red glow is beginning to fade. Over the valley ribbons of street lights look like distant fairy lights. A few birds are still swooping overhead. Crows. Maybe Jack, Marjorie and their mate! It is too dark to see them properly so no chance of even pretending to recognise them.

"Will you have time for a walk with me tonight?" asked the Webmaster.

It is approaching six o'clock and the Worker is just finishing for the day. On work days she only has time for an evening walk. Only the Webmaster and the dogs get to enjoy a morning walk.

"If we go now we won't need the torches."

The radio is still on as we leave. The Webmaster doesn't know how to turn it off. At least he has never been know to turn it off. He says the dogs like listening to it, but it is doubtful they appreciate the BBC six o'clock news.

"If you are willing to put trousers on we could do the long walk around the lake" said the Webmaster.

After a quick check on the weather I ignore him and dress in shorts and tee shirt. I'll take my chances with the nettles. "Do you think it will have dried out by now? When was the last time it rained?"

The usually muddy paths down to the wood and across the Head of Trent are surprisingly dry and there is little sign of damage from the torential rain and flash floods of last Tuesday. The dogs are pleased to be returning to the long walk, sniff paradise for them. The Old Dog is particularly spritely, forgets she no longer jumps stiles and bounds over several.

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