Donkey house in progress

Blog log 1: Saturday midday

It is the last weekend before the return to school, so I am making some progress with the donkey house. After a long exploration of the possibilities, I have settled on a metal construction 5 metres x 4 metres with walls made of brushwood. Here is the drawing…

Today’s blog will be a ‘live’ one. I’ll add photos during the progress outside in the donkey meadow. It is a lovely sunny day. I am hoping the donkeys won’t eat the brushwood. (Would the donks eat their own stable? Advice welcome!)

Blog log 2: Saturday 13.30
Believe it or not, it is now too hot outside so I am taking a lunch break and will sit in the shade for a while. I’m still overwhelmed with lemons: what can I do with them all? Barbara made some lemon curd when she was here. I’m making a crema Catalana for dessert (but that uses two lemons at most!) What can I do with them all?

Blog log 3: Saturday 15.15

Experimented with dry Martinis before lunch, as a way of using up some large olives. On reflection, there must be easier ways to use up large olives… After three dry Martinis I set fire to my pork chops, burned the first new potatoes from my garden, wrote rude things on the Catholicism Pure & Simple blog, and accidentally put the salad dressing in a skillet and brought it to the boil. Still, all is not lost: having destroyed lunch, I have opened a bottle of the remarkable Mayor de Castilla “Roble”, and all is right with the world. (Though little is currently progressing on the donkey house front.) Let me elaborate a little. I discovered some time ago in a restaurant in Burgos while having a rest day from the Camino in 2006 – staying in the four star Mesón del Cid – that I much preferred the Ribera del Duero wines to the well-known Rioja.

Here is the Mayor de Castilla “Roble” in the donkey house setting. Or to be more precise, in the setting as yet unoccupied by a donkey house, on account of further delays including the need for a siesta. Dreaming of donkeys… (Stop biting me!)

Blog log 4: Saturday 17.45

Good. So… what progress with the donkey house arrangements? One cut thumb. One fingernail entirely shredded on small finger. Wine glass broken while attempting to refill it standing on new stepladder arrangements… Mud all over camera. Little improvement in donkey house since 1.30 pm.

The great achievement of the day – apart from discovering that a bottle of Mayor de Castilla is not a great way to get an afternoon’s work done – was the stepladder arrangement from the donkey feed store to the next terrace. I managed to attach an old stepladder to the wall, wire a handrail to it, and hammer a load of nails into the wall (just for the hell of it; what they actually contribute to the structure is anyone’s guess.)

Good. So that concludes a live blog on the donkey preparations, with a few tips on what not to do with a good wine after lunch. Here’s another photo of the girls, for whom this whole effort is really all about:


About Gareth Thomas

After a mixed career as an aircraft technician, London fringe theatre playwright, Franciscan friar, and secondary school teacher, I find myself dividing my time mostly between looking after the needs of four donkeys in a remote location in the mountains in the Costa Blanca and preparing a legal case against the corrupt management of my monstrous last employer - the Elians group - for unfair dismissal. I like to hear the wind in the pine trees. I do not like struggling to get a duvet into a duvet cover. My musical tastes are extinct and I have mostly given up cycle racing.
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9 Responses to Donkey house in progress

  1. RatBag says:

    What to do with lemons? Had you thought of lemon marmalade?

  2. Karin says:

    Shaker Lemon Pie!! Actual slices of lemons in it!! Might use..3? Wander the web for a recipe.

  3. Barbara says:

    Yes, they will eat the walls. I thought they were going to be plastic?

  4. Frere Rabit says:

    Plastic donkeys won’t eat the walls, but I thought I’d get real donkeys…

    The whole situation prolly needs a re-think. I’ll put a split-cane layer inside. They won’t eat that, will they?

  5. Barbara says:

    No, not if they (the not plastic donkeys) have the brushwood on the outside to eat………….probably

  6. RatBag says:

    This is turning into a better story than “Three Little Pigs”. I’m recommending prestressed concrete.

  7. Geert Bakker says:

    I’ve studied this last picture for a while and their body language tells me that already they like each other’s company. Lucky you! Under what tree are you building their home? Ask the elderly locals for advice!

  8. Frere Rabit says:

    Geert, you may be right about the body language… Now the donks are ganging up on me! See Matilde and Ruby post.

  9. Toadspittle says:


    “Experimented with dry Martinis before lunch, as a way of using up some large olives. On reflection, there must be easier ways to use up large olives…”

    Easier, perhaps. ¿Better? No.

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