It's going to be a hot one today so we were up and out by five. The boyz were supercharged after a good nights sleep and were off like a rocket up the hill. There must have been badgers around because they both adopted their guard dog pose as soon as we passed the front gate. The guard dog pose involves them standing stock still with their feet anchored to the ground and their heads thrown back purposefully sniffing the wind. I find myself chuckling away at their daft antics and the canine seriousness with which they go about their morning routine. The two of them are undiluted purveyors of laughter which must be good for our blood pressure.
The skies over Todi were full of balloons for the annual balloonists gathering. In Italy they are known as Montgolfieri and this morning there were fourteen or fifteen of them soaring ethereally above the towers of the cathedral. I stood and watched them for a full twenty minutes while the two troubadors explored the olive groves.
Have just finished Berton Gellman's book Angler on the 'shadow presidency of Dick Cheney'. I found it to be well balanced and more insightful than many of these instant analyses tend to be. On television last night President Obama gave a thoughtful and sensitive response to a sharp question from a journalist about the death of another six British soldiers in Afghanistan - fifteen so far this month. He has a remarkable way of marshalling facts and taking difficult issues head on - skill sets lacking in most of Europe's current heads of government.