The first day of March. Although we are not quite through it, the English winter of 2022/2023 has been pretty mild and bearable. There has also been very little rain to speak of and as a consequence our vegetable plot is proving quite easy to dig over. In some past years each spadeful of soil has been heavy because of water-logging. Our soil has a high clay content and tends to retain water easily but this year it seems quite light and friable - easy to break up.
In the next week or so I plan to open up a couple of our compost bins in order to enrich the earth where our vegetables grow. We are quite fervent about composting and save just about everything that can be composted from potato peelings to the contents of our vacuum cleaner.
A few years back I was horrified to discover that most teabags are made from a fine plastic mesh and not biodegradable paper as I had naively imagined. For years I had been putting used teabags in our compost bins. Thereafter we would empty the contents of old teabags into our compost bins and resign the empty plastic mesh bags to our household waste bin that is collected by the local council every two weeks.
However, two years ago the Sainsburys supermarket chain dispensed with plastic mesh in their "Red Label" brand teabags and so we switched to them. It's nice to put these new paper bags into our compost knowing that they will rot down easily in the bins without having to consider the plastic issue. By the way, I also wonder how much micro-plastic residue I must have ingested over the years through drinking gallons of tea effectively filtered through plastic mesh bags. Teabag manufacturers kept that one very quiet indeed probably realising that openness and full disclosure would affect sales.
British people drink a lot more tea than North Americans. We average two to three mugs a day so the number of teabags we use is significant in most households.
Frances is heading down to London early tomorrow morning and her husband Stew is off to France for four days on a stag-do adventure that will involve skiing and snowboarding in The Alps. Consequently, Little Miss Phoebe is currently asleep at our house. She will be in the same cot tomorrow night too. It is both a privilege and a joy to be hands-on grandparents like this and you may not believe this but we love her more than tea.