Hottest day of the year so far forecasted so I donned my (one and only) sundress. Early breakfasts and departure for the guests so an early walk for the dogs and even getting paper by 10am! Came back and noticed Andrew getting the cows ready to bring across so Chris was summoned to help with the ‘lollipop crossing’. I was chatting to one of the guests and could hear the traffic was moving again so assumed cows across safely especially when Chris came back up the drive. ‘quick, jump in the car – the cows are half way down to Bakewell!’ Jumped in leaving two startled dogs wondering what was happening. Just along the road we met another local farmer who was walking one of the heifers back and Chris explained where she needed to go. His wife followed us in her car in case any more hands were needed and we were almost on the outskirts of Bakewell before we caught up with the cows. Some had got into a field, but at least were safe. Andrew and Ian had herded the rest into a gated entrance so Chris jumped out to help them take back, the farmers wife reversed her car to stop the down traffic and when it was safe I directed the up traffic up. When all that had passed I drove back home via Over Haddon. As I got back I could see the traffic starting to build up on this side heading down to Bakewell with the occasional car driving up. Jumped into my wellies and started down he field with the initial intention of helping get them in the field when they got here but realising that could still be some time away I headed to the road and started to explain to each car what was happening and suggesting an alternative route and using our drive to turn around in. Gradually I could see the cows getting closer and there were a few more helpers too so I just made sure traffic was starting to move safely. When I got down to the field where they had put the heifers (less the seven still in the field nearer to Bakewell) I found that Andrews neighbours on the Over Haddon side, the Mycocks were also there. They were coming back back from Bakewell when they got caught up in the delays and when they realised why they had naturally helped… It had taken the best part of an hour from jumping in the car to getting back indoors! Turned out a revving motorbike had spooked them. Luckily this had not put us too much behind with our scheduled BBQ.. Geoff and Margaret from Chelmorton came over. Looked like we had picked the best day for it! They stayed until early evening when Andrew brought up the missing cows. He knew the farmer the field belonged to and apparently he had also had trouble with ‘skittish youngster’. Took a few phone calls and bookings in the evening. More balloons. What a day!