This week a healthy Angus cross calf appeared unannounced, among a bunch of Sussex cattle not due to calve until October. We rarely glimpse this calf as the mother likes to hide it up. She nonchalantly stays with the herd but her udder is being sucked, so we know that she’s secretly feeding it.

Lookering duties are shared. I’m ashamed to admit that none of us had clued up to this impending event. Surprises improve alertness. In our defence our focus is on silaging and hay making whilst the sun shines.

We’re enjoying the sunny days. Farming is so much easier when the weather works in your favour. Gathering in quality fodder ready for next winter is vital. This year we’ve had our fair share of headaches caused by machinery breakdowns. Lengthy discussions have followed regarding the right time and how to manage the finances to enable upgrading various machines. Patching and bodging can become expensive. Of course we’d all like to drive shiny new kit but can the business justify the expenditure? I’m not going to ask our accountant his opinion.

Middle daughter is holidaying in Greece enjoying temperatures of 22 degrees, while we’re basking in 34 degrees. We’ve all the ingredients for a great holiday here at home, why go abroad? I’m determined not to complain about the heat. Admittedly it’s a touch on the warm side for doing physical farm labouring jobs, a fact lost on those sitting in air conditioned cabs. I’ve decided flexibility is the answer. I’ve taken to doing my outside tasks early or late in the day. Inside jobs suddenly become more appealing around midday. Also on the plus side our solar panels are generating electricity.

When we had our dogs trimmed, the Londonite family members protested that they looked terrible. The new look did take a while to get used to, but I argued that the advantages were worth it. Cooler for the dogs in hot weather and less hair and dirt in the house. These days there is far too much emphasis put on cosmetic looks. Personally I regard comfort as being far more important.

Some sheep exhibitors choose to colour the fleeces of their show animals to enhance their image. If I was that sheep I’d feel embarrassed by these most unnatural tarting up practises. Agricultural shows help to educate and connect the urban population with food production and rural crafts. They also provide a valuable opportunity for those in our industry who wish to showcase their animals. I enjoy these occasions, but was disappointed to be denied access to view the cattle in the sheds at Heathfield Show. I assume this was implemented for health and safety reasons.

Sadly it sounds as if aesthetic looks were given priority over safety considerations in the Grenfell tower refurbishment. The emergency services dealing with the catastrophic consequences of the fire must feel shocked to learn that the disaster could have been avoided. Hindsight is of course a wonderful thing, but prevention must be given a higher priority.

Statistics for accidents on farms are not good. Could agricultural machinery manufacturers help save lives by incorporating more safety features in their design? During this busy season, I implore all farmers to take care. I know it’s important to get the harvest in, but please don’t cut corners. It’s never worth it. Believe me: telling relatives that their loved one is dead is not a pleasant task. Better to be late in one world than early in the next as my mother used to say.

I’ve been appalled by the political posturing that has taken place in the aftermath of the recent atrocities. It seems immoral to make gains out of these horrific events. Brenda in Bristol hit the nail on the head when she told the reporter too much politics is going on. Theresa May made a right hash of her election campaign. Jeremy Corbyn successfully engaged the youth, galvanising them to turn out and vote. I hope he’s a mathematical genius, as all those promises will come at a cost. And now Corbyn is rallying at Glastonbury Festival: I didn’t see him dancing though. A hung parliament is worrying when the country needs to be pulling together over the Brexit negotiations.

I remember Michael Gove turning on his fellow leave campaigners after the European Union referendum. Boris was conspicuous by his absence, I think he frightened himself. But if you’ve got friends like Gove who needs enemies? When he was interviewed on Radio Four recently, Gove painted an impressively upbeat picture for our industry. I’m trying hard not to be sceptical. As my youngest daughter said: “Good people can do bad things, bad people can do good things.” Let’s give Gove a chance, fingers crossed.

I can see no comparison between my henriettas and hen partying in London. I attended in a purely chaperoning capacity you understand. Doing shots is no problem, the banging starts the next morning, and ear defenders don’t help. Girlie adventure began with brunch in Blackheath, followed by Clue Quest in Islington. We were locked in a room, but luckily not with Corbyn. You’re given one hour to escape by finding and solving cryptic clues. It was nail biting stuff, breaking out with seconds to spare.

We walked along Regents Canal heading for Kings Cross granary wharf area, which has been beautifully regenerated. After Indian food, Bombay style, we went bowling in Bloomsbury, played Mr and Mrs games, before dancing into the early hours. A fascinating visit to the city, but there are too many people in close proximity for my liking. I’ll stick with country life.