Sunday: Hili dialogue, Mietek and Leon monologue, farm rush hour and some winter morning tweets

by Matthew Cobb

Good morning! This is the ultimate Cobb morning post – The Boss will be back at the controls tomorrow, full of penguins.

In Poland, Hili is pen-sive (sorry not sorry):

A: Hili, where is my pen?
Hili: Under your desk.
In Polish:
Ja: Hili, gdzie jest mój długopis?
Hili: Pod biurkiem.


Mietek the kitten is healing nicely, and has become great friends with Leon. Malgorzata sent a picture and a report:
Here is a picture of Leon and Mietek sitting on the same armchair. Elzbieta wrote to me that Leon had just very thoroughly washed the whole kitten. They are friends!
And Elzbieta converted it into a Leon Monologue:

Leon: I washed his ears and he fell asleep.

In Polish: Umyłem mu uszy i zasnął.

Down on farm it’s, well – you know:


Because it’s 1 December, we have set up our advent calendar. No chocolate, just little pictures. For the last few years, we have bought one from painter and printmaker Angela Harding:

Here’s a more traditional view of December, taken from the UK children’s Ladybird book series:


In Macclesfield, Abi Gilmore caught morning’s minstrel, dawn’s delight. Sound on:

A wintry reintroduction:

A wintry web:

A wintry scene by one of Jerry’s favourite singers:


Tweets sent in by The Boss:

If you think Twitter is bad, have a look at the comments on YouTube:

From Heather Hastie – ‘tweet of the week’:

And in a similar vein:


A reader asked Jerry this question, who asked me, who asked Twitter. There doesn’t seem to be a simple answer, though if you have any recommendations, chip in below:

Finally, to link with Jerry’s recent amazing trip, here’s a reminder that today is the 60th anniversary of the Antarctic Treaty. Some lovely pics in Emma Johnston’s thread:



  1. Jenny Haniver
    Posted December 1, 2019 at 5:19 am | Permalink

    The frozen cobwebs are stunning.

    It’s serendipitous that today is World Antarctica Day, which will mark the first whole day that PCC(E) is back from from his Antarctic adventure.

    Thank you, Matthew, for keeping up the Hili Dialog to brighten our mornings and bring us Cuthbert and crew during PCC(E)’s absence. I’m not Jewish but I’ll say that was a much appreciated mitzvah.

    • rickflick
      Posted December 1, 2019 at 8:30 am | Permalink

      Yes, indeed. Thanks to Matthew for keeping the home lights burning.

  2. Jim batterson
    Posted December 1, 2019 at 7:45 am | Permalink

    Yes indeed. From the u.s.: Thank you matthew for taking the helm, keeping us current on hili and friends, and introducing farm rush hour…all while tending to strike duties and if i recall, finishing up with your editor on your latest book. The continuity has been very much appreciated!

  3. Michael Fisher
    Posted December 1, 2019 at 7:55 am | Permalink

    A clearer view of the fierce Fisher Pekania pennanti – a member of the weasel family [rarely eats fish]:

    Thank you Matt!

    • Janet
      Posted December 1, 2019 at 9:23 am | Permalink

      And thank you, Michael, very cool story about the Fishers

      • Michael Fisher
        Posted December 1, 2019 at 10:02 am | Permalink

        Ta very much

    • merilee
      Posted December 1, 2019 at 9:58 am | Permalink

      Any relation, Michael?

      • Michael Fisher
        Posted December 1, 2019 at 10:01 am | Permalink

        Yes, that cutie is from the furry fury side of my clan. 🙂

      • Posted December 2, 2019 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

        Mushroom and E. coli, banana and pine tree, bee and human, we are all cousins.

  4. Debra Coplan
    Posted December 1, 2019 at 8:08 am | Permalink

    Thank you Matthew! I so enjoyed your posts and your keeping us connected to WEIT while Jerry is away.
    I’m loving the morning greeting at Caenhill Farms. It helps me figure out what day it is.

    • Jenny Haniver
      Posted December 1, 2019 at 6:33 pm | Permalink

      And why are they called mistle thrushes, she asked: Because they really, really like mistletoe.

      • rickflick
        Posted December 1, 2019 at 8:18 pm | Permalink

        Odd to say, but: The final verse of the Jethro Tull song “Jack-in-the-Green” from their album Songs from the Wood mentions the bird in the lines “Oh, the mistlethrush is coming. Jack, put out the light.”

      • merilee
        Posted December 1, 2019 at 11:14 pm | Permalink

        And why was the toe added to the mistle?

  5. Ken Kukec
    Posted December 1, 2019 at 8:28 am | Permalink

    If you think Twitter is bad, have a look at the comments on YouTube …

    Never read the YouTube comments, man. Never.

    I’d as lief accompany Ewan McGregor into the worst toilet in Scotland scene in Trainspotting. 🙂

  6. Janet
    Posted December 1, 2019 at 9:24 am | Permalink

    Matthew, we much appreciated your daily Hilis!!!

    • boudiccadylis
      Posted December 1, 2019 at 9:57 am | Permalink

      Very much. Thanks

  7. sted24
    Posted December 1, 2019 at 11:11 am | Permalink

    The first magical colour photographs I remember seeing of Antarctica were in “The Crossing of Antarctica” by Sir Vivian Fuchs and Sir Edmund Hillary (1958). It told the story of the first ground crossing of the continent.

    Fuchs started out from the Weddell Sea. Hillary ventured inland from the Ross Sea laying out a route and supplies for the Fuchs party once they had passed the Pole.

    One (B&W) photo I like shows a scientist seated next to a Sno-cat, a handbell at his side: “Geoffrey Pratt taking a gravity reading. The bell was rung to warn people to switch off engines and stand still”.

    Youtube has the official film of the expedition: The Commonwealth Trans-Antarctic Expedition (Parts 1-5). Part1 has some early Scott and Shackleton footage, Part2 interesting domestic scenes of the first overwintering party, and Part4 the rescue of a Sno-cat from a crevasse.

  8. Azreal
    Posted December 1, 2019 at 11:17 am | Permalink

    Thank you, Matthew, for filling in for Jerry.

  9. Nell Whiteside
    Posted December 1, 2019 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

    Thank you so much for the Hili updates and all the interesting tweets.

    Your query re human evolution :

    Recently I read an article by John Hawks (U of Madison-Wisconsin) – but can’t find it(!) Lee Berger (Wits. Univ.) is usually interesting.

    This might be a bit complicated, but is excellent :

    A Neanderthal Perspective on Human Origins with Svante Pääbo – 2018 via

    • Jenny Haniver
      Posted December 1, 2019 at 7:55 pm | Permalink

      Given the wording of the title, Svante Pääbo must be a Neanderthal.

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