The International Steam Pages

Our Cup Runneth Over, The Mitcheldean Garden 2016

This is the 2016 index of the pages describing our very dull life in the UK since arriving in 2011. Having negotiated the maze of regulations designed to frustrate those wanting to bring a non-EU spouse into the UK, Yuehong has been the proud owner of a UK passport since late 2014 which means we can have a near perfect balance of the best 8 months of the year in the UK and the best 4 months of the year in Penang. We don't run a car in either place, public transport suffices for most of our needs, but during the UK summer we frequently hire a car for a weekend and get out and about in the countryside, much of it is not worth recording formally but the tip of the iceberg is represented by our visits to steam fairs, something we continued in 2016.

Click here for the main 'Life in the UK' index page.

For most people in the UK the prospect of taking on a property built up 33 steps on a 30 degree slope would be a nightmare. For us, it's proved both a challenge and a delight. This is our sixth summer (2016). The first started late for us in June 2011 and was spent cutting away the growth of two years near total neglect. It was dry as the seasons go in these parts by which I mean the moss had trouble making any progress. 2012 was the most miserable summer imaginable, it was cold and wet almost continuously. 2013 had as bad a start as can be imagined, but this set up the later months very nicely, 2014 was a year of sunshine and consolidation and 2015 allowed us a little bit of time to sit back and enjoy the spectacle. After a very mild winter, garden maintenance has occupied most of our time, although as usual Yuehong's output from her greenhouse and the endless supply of bargain buys has necessitated more areas of the lawns being sacrificed.


Resting on Your Laurels
(updated 31st October 2016)
October 2016
Surviving a drought

August 2016

Love Thy Neighbours

June 2016

Quick Guide to Spring (Part 2)

Spring 2016

Quick Guide to Spring (Part 1)

Spring 2016

Our garden history 2011-15

The Best Garden in Mitcheldean?

Summer 2015

Big Changes at a Glance

Summer 2014

Holding back the deluge

Summer 2012

How does Your Garden Grow?

Summer 2013

Getting started:

Summer 2011

Rob and Yuehong Dickinson