Sunday 30 November 2014

Not just in Wimbledon...

Agriculture is a big employer in Orkney. Farming has been a way of life here for 5000 years and it is pretty much the main industry on the islands.

A result of this is that there are loads of silage or haylage bales produced each year, which are all wrapped in plastic sheet. The sheet comes in various colours: black, green or white. It is even possible to use two colours at once, making each bale look like a giant humbug (he said, warming to the festive spirit). Fortunately, there are opportunities to dispose of all of this plastic in a sustainable and environmentally-friendly manner, once the silage/haylage has been unwrapped to be fed to cattle or sheep. One such scheme is this one, run by Solway Recycling.

Inevitably, with a lightweight, thin material and Orkney's windy weather, a fair bit of silage wrap is blown about the countryside, at least until it meets a barbed wire fence. This is certainly unsightly and can be downright noisy in the wrong conditions.

At this juncture, around the environs of Tense Towers, Our Lass goes into wombling mode, collecting stray wrap and disposing of it in an appropriate way. That is to say, it disappears into our household rubbish bin and eventually ends up at an incinerator on Shetland to provide heating in Lerwick.

Just don't mention the words 'Madame' and 'Cholet', or you may be chased around the kitchen by an irate woman brandishing a sharp utensil.

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