We have a man living in the house of solid sober habits who rises uncalled at the unearthly hour of five o’clock each morning and, of course he wakens everybody else with his heavy tread for our hired men sleep in the attics and I wish you heard them bang down these creaking garret stairs and down through the whole house and every individual boot or clog makes a hideous din on the flags before the foot gets fitted into it. For they are careful to leave every door wide open to prevent any lazy person having a peaceful half hour longer.
I am privileged to lie till nearer the dawn for one cannot do much indoors till the light comes. I have often thought that on a pitch dark morning the twinkling lights about the out-buildings and the warm streaming light from the house door make a very pleasant sight. Not less pleasant are the sounds: the clatter of pails and clogs, the whistling and shouting of men, the munching of the horses, the “grainin’” of one cow, the “hoast” of another and the gentle rattle of their chains as they rax for the last slices of turnip on which they have been breakfasting.
But oh, when there’s a storm of sound and rain, especially the wind! Our byres and our dairy are in line, the dairy separated from the house by a narrow space through which the wind whips with terrific force at times. Every drop of milk must be carried in the teeth of that wind and, if it be dark and wet at the same time, then is your strength and your mettle tried severely.
I have often been covered with milk spray from head to foot. Then, after being separated, the milk has to be carried back into the yard, the froth of it flying about like snow. There are times when feminine garments are distinctly a hindrance and I have a fellow feeling with Lady Harberton.