Tim Dowling: hunting for a tortoise in driving rain will shrink my inflated ego nicely

Every season he adds a new hiding place to his rotation, to make him just a little bit harder to find

I am sitting in the kitchen in front of my laptop, drinking coffee in the sluggish morning light, just back from the southwestern leg of the band’s 2022 tour. I am exhausted, my stuff is still piled in a big pyramid in the sitting room, and my shoulder aches where the banjo strap catches it.

“Would you care to know,” I say, “where our album currently sits on the official UK Folk chart?” The oldest one looks up, composing his features into a careful, blank expression.

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