Monday, 2 November 2009

Pumpkin carving and concussion

Halloween, what a day. Pity I can't remember the second half of it.
We did some errands in the morning and headed to the lottie at what we thought was 2pm but later released it was 1pm (Andrew was wearing a watch for a change and hadn't put it back the hour from last week!). We had been to Tesco* and got a pumpkin and a few packets of crisps and drinks etc and were ready for a Halloween/Autumn clear up day.

Andrew did the clear up bit, I on the other hand was too super excited to have my very first pumpkin to carve. When we were growing up all us N. Irish kids had to carve turnips for Halloween (HARD work) and not that enjoyable actually, no wonder I only did it a few times. You see, back then it was mighty difficult to get hold of a pumpkin here, this year we were surrounded by them. There is no way on this Earth that I would EVER carve (and waste) a pumpkin of this size had we grown it ourselves, but we didn't so I went at it with a swiss army knife and a lot of glee.
Half an hour later and pumpkin innards galore and this was the result - a pumpkin so scared of Halloween that it had puked all over the place. I was very proud.

It was raining off and on quite heavy and was cold but there was going to be a lottie gathering to celebrate the year and bbq's were lit (with blowtorches, haha, the weather was just not co-operating) so we wanted to hang around. Really, we couldn't be bothered digging and weeding etc so instead we gathered up a load of produce and had ourselves a Harvest bench celebration. Look at that bounty!! I'll talk more about what's there during the week and just how proud of our leeks I am.

Wendy (my best friend) came down to visit for the first time. Which was great.
'Really!' you say, 'the very first time?!'.
'Yes', I say, 'she is a super busy girl and rarely gets time to visit lotties'.
'That is sad', you say.
'I know.... ', I say (shakes head in pity).

We sat round the wood stove and had a good chat then went over to get a hot dog and listen to a bit of a sing-song at the BBQ area. It was fab, really fab. There was a great wee atmosphere even though few people had braved the weather, the sausages were cooked wonderfully (thank you Billy Dick) and the guitar was played perfectly by Ricky, even if he didn't know any of the words. Hahaha, we all just da da dee deee daa dee-ed our way along!

'The beast' - massive version of our wood stove - note full moon too!!!
Back at the shed it was time to gather up our harvest and poke around with our own stove; such heat - lovely. Fireworks began in the town and echoed around the lough and that was the end of the fun for Maggie, she hid in the shed, a pitiful sight poor thing, she really couldn't hide in a corner enough; it was time to go home. On the walk up to the car I got this great photo of Wendy and shortly after slipped and fell on some muck that's been churned up and re-seeded with grass. I've fallen here twice before, the soil has a lot of clay in it and it is very slidey. Well this time I supposedly hit the ground 'with a fair whack' according to Andrew and Wendy (I prefer to think it hit me, I'm the innocent party here!) and knocked myself out. Boy, the rest of the night is something of a mystery and yesterday my back was so painful I could barely walk. Still feeling concussed today and therefore confused and very tired but I'm fine. Great memories for Wendy on her first visit!

* may be evil ~ still to be confirmed


  1. What an eventful day! I do think there's a book in here about your experiences, but this last year or two everyone's been writing that kind of thing so maybe a bit later. I love the way the pumpkin's hat sits!

  2. You make me smile Carrie, I love to hear about what you been up to. I just love your pumpkin!

  3. Hope you feel better soon, it can take days to get over a concussion so take it easy and look after yourself.
    We used carve turnips - and carrots (!) instead of pumpkins too (this is far down south in Ireland) - pumkins are way, way easier, but I think the turnips are more traditional.
    Love your blog Carrie xxxxxx

  4. Hi Carrie - hope you are feeling better, be kind to your head.
    Loving Mr Yukky Man he made me laugh. OS says he wants to do one just like it but fortunately pumpkin carving is over for this year. Hopefully he will have forgotten by next...

  5. Carrie girl .. I don't know where to begin after reading all of what happened .. first I hope to god you are alright with that head smacking ordeal .. naughty wet slippery ground was just waiting for it's victim. BAD BAD grass/ground !!
    OMG !! You did such an excellent pumpkin carving girl ! .. Hangover Pumpkin spilling its ... hum ? innards ? haha .. did you know how delicious roasted pumpkin seeds are ? and how absolutely packed with nutrition ? Something to think about for next Halloween maybe ? .. BUT HOLY MOSES I would never be able to carve a turnip .. I'm still shaking my head over that one ! haha
    I love the little party and I would have had such a good time with you guys .. the roasted marshmallows would have been scarfed down by me with no extras for anyone else .. I think I should be honest about that addiction ?
    So now you are forewarned ? if I fly over on my broom for the night ?
    Poor Maggie .. I can understand she was skittish with all of the noise .. I'm sure she was so happy to go home .. and so worried about you !
    Your blog is looking fantastic ! I am so behind in doing anything right now .. we had a nasty emergency pipe leakage yesterday .. I don't want to ever repeat what went on .. I'm still exhausted from it all .. so is poor husband ..
    So I need a little time to catch up ? haha
    Hey .. I am so proud of you with the pumpkin mission .. let me know that your head is OK .. OK ?? LOL
    Joy : )

  6. I do hope that you're okay as it sounds like you took quite a tumble! Flighty xx

  7. Hearty thanks to you all, you lovely people. I'm glad the pumpkin was taken in the way it was intended and didn't offend, I just thought it was too funny not to do that puke.
    My head has been very bad but today I feel a bit more myself and things are on the mend. Still can't remember much between Saturday dinner time and today though!
    I'll definatley be sticking to the pumpkin carving as opposed to turnips (boy thet are extremely hard work - blister inducing) even though they are traditional here. Never carved a carrot though, that is a new one on me Selkie!! Look forward to seeing you on your broom next year,Joy, we hope to do it bigger and better and I am going to eat roasted seeds alright, sounds good.
    Love to all xxx


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