A Pannage Extension

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This morning we visited Lyndhurst in order to buy a couple of presents.

Shirley Holms 3

In order to benefit from the gorgeous autumn light, we took a diversion

Shirley Holms 1

down Shirley Holms.

House in landscape

Across fields to our left we admired the situation of a house nestling on the hill

Horse and autumn leaves

and a chestnut horse blending into surrounding trees.

Cyclists and autumn leaves

A pair of cyclists rounding a bend,

Cyclist in Shirley Holms

soon to be followed by a solo rider, laboured up the undulating tarmac. Note the speed limit.

Forest floor

Long shadows were cast across the

Autumn leaves 2

forest floor

Trees in autumn 1

fast receiving

Autumn leaves 1

autumn leaves,

Autumn leaves 6

some of which clung to shady banks,

Autumn leaf

and stood proud at intervals.

Autumn leaves 4

 

Ornamental trees animated a

Autumn leaves 5

splendid garden.

Having made successful purchases in Lyndhurst, we lunched there on Bertie’s excellent fish, chips, and mushy peas. We both drank tea which, rather unfortunately, resembled a dishcloth that needed boiling.

The Private Ear Clinic, this afternoon was based at Lymington Hospital. Our next visit was to this establishment where my left ear was relieved of the remains of its stubborn wax.

Trees in autumn 2

We then returned to the forest where, just outside Bramshaw,

Pigs 1

we came across a sounder of swine slobbering

Pig 3

among ditches

Pig 2

leaves

Pig 4

and mud.

Pigs on road 1

Occasionally with a loud snort they would trot across the road

Pigs on road 2

to investigate the pickings on the other side. The pigs are revelling in a month’s extension of the pannage, possibly because of our stretch of mild weather.

Pony on road 1

This particular spot was doubly hazardous for drivers, because ponies

Ponies on road

played the same leisurely game.

Pony on road 2

The speed limit in the forest is generally 40 m.p.h., but you would be well advised to reduce this on the serpentine roads. You never know what is around the next bend.

This evening we dined at Bartlet’s in the Church Hall at Bransgore. Jackie’s main meal was chicken tikka masala; mine was lamb madras. We take our own drinks. Jackie’s was Hoegaarden. I finished the madiran (WordPress, how many times must I tell you this is one word?).

The Schneider Trophy

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This afternoon Jackie drove us to Calshot and back in order to watch the sun go down.

Beaulieu River and Abbey 1

The tide was up in the Beaulieu River, offering reflections of Beaulieu Palace House

Beaulieu River and houses

and of private houses.

Fawley Power Sation and ponies

Along Rollestone Road the ancient and modern meet in the forms of ponies grazing freely on historic moorland and the towers of Fawley Power Station.

Calshot beach and ships 1

We arrived at Calshot shortly before sunset. The tide had ebbed; buoys were beached,

Calshot beach and ships 2

and large vessels glided past,

Sunset and beach huts

towards the low sun that lit the beach huts’ verandas.

Sunset 1

Swirling clouds splashed around the western sun

Sunset 2

while, to the east, smooth water reflected its effects.

Boat reflected in pool

Parked boats were mirrored in pools on the quayside.

Low tide, boats, beach huts

Shallow water glistened

Sunset 3

and gleamed,

Houston House

as did the windows of Houston House

Houston House Plaque

which bears this plaque.

Wikipedia tells us that:

‘The Coupe d’Aviation Maritime Jacques Schneider, commonly called the Schneider Trophy or Schneider Prize (sometimes incorrectly referred to as the Schneider Cup, a different prize), was a trophy awarded annually (and later, biannually) to the winner of a race for seaplanes and flying boats. The Schneider Trophy is now held at the Science Museum, South Kensington, London.

Announced in 1912 by Jacques Schneider, a French financier, balloonist and aircraft enthusiast, the competition offered a prize of approximately £1,000. The race was held twelve times between 1913 and 1931. It was intended to encourage technical advances in civil aviation but became a contest for pure speed with laps over a (usually) triangular course (initially 280 km, later 350 km). The contests were staged as time trials, with aircraft setting off individually at pre-agreed times, usually 15 minutes apart. The contests were very popular and some attracted crowds of over 200,000 spectators. An earlier trophy, also presented by Jacques Schneider in 1910, in France, was the Schneider Cup, which is now in the possession of the RAF College Cranwell.’

and

‘In 1931 the British government withdrew support, but a private donation of £100,000 from Lucy, Lady Houston, allowed Supermarine to compete and win on 13 September against only British opposition, with reportedly half a million spectators lining the beachfronts. The Italian, French, and German entrants failed to ready their aircraft in time for the competition. The remaining British team set both a new world speed record (610 km/h (380 mph)) and won the trophy outright with a third straight win.[7] The following days saw the winning Supermarine S.6B further break the world speed record twice, making it the first craft to break the 400 mph barrier on 29 September at an average speed of 655.8 km/h (407.5 mph).’

Sunset 4

As the sun gravitated towards

Sunset 5

the horizon,

Sunset 6

orange hues

Sunset 7

spread

Sunset 8

and deepened.

Jet trail

A jet trail pierced the indigo backcloth,

Sunset 9

Sunset 10

and the palette introduced red pigments

Sunset 11

streaking

Sunset 12

across the firmament;

Sunset reflected in stream

finally dipping into the stream running alongside Jack Maynard Road.

This evening, for dinner, we enjoyed Jackie’s splendid beef and mushroom pie; boiled potatoes, carrots and cabbage, with which I drank more of the madiran.

 

 

‘What Could Be Better?”

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Nasturtiums are the yardstick of frost. When their thick tendrils go limp and soggy and the flowers droop, we know that frost has arrived. On an overcast morning of this unseasonably oppressively warm day, I wandered out in the garden to take the measure of them.

Nasturtium 1Nasturtium 2Nasturtium 3Nasturtium 4Nasturtium 5Nasturtium 6

The flowers may look a little careworn, but they are bearing up well.

I then spent far too long fine-tuning my complaints letter to a partner of the O’Neill Patient legal firm before finally posting it by recorded delivery and e-mailing copies to our mortgage broker and to Becky. A much more pleasant task was the final bit of paperwork as an executor of my late friend Wolf’s estate.

This involved Jackie driving me to the Post Office in New Milton. We continued on to Tanner’s Lane in time for a pre-sunset look at

the shore,

where a weak sun gleamed on the water.

Gradually

the hues deepened.

While watching this, I became aware of distant exuberant voices, until one small boy rushed past me, came to a standstill,

and waited for another to join him. Perhaps you can’t run so fast in Wellies.

Off they both continued, still testing their lung capacity,

until a somewhat larger lad divided them.

Bringing up the rear was a young woman I took to be the mother of at least one of the runners. She said she often brought them down here, where they loved to run about or throw stones. They would rather do that than anything else. “What could be better?” she exclaimed.

As I returned to the car I admired the cloudscape over the Isle of Wight and The Needles.

This evening we dined on Jackie’s succulent steak and mushroom pie, creamy mashed potatoes, crisp cabbage and crunchy carrots. The Culinary Queen drank Hoegaarden and I drank Reserve des Tuguets madiran 2014.

Lifelong Friends

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This morning I enjoyed the attentions of our dental hygienist. The surgery having cancelled three appointments in a row, it was something of a surprise that this particular young lady was fit, well, and in attendance.

Today’s administrative tasks included revising the draft of my complaints letter to incorporate suggestions from our mortgage broker; exchanging e-mails concerning the sale of my French house, and send off a payment in relation to this; and ordering a supply of oil for our central heating system.

This afternoon I scanned a batch of colour prints from May 1993. These were of Louisa’s eleventh birthday party in the garden of Lindum House at Newark.

One of the highlights of a group of young people during the Newark years was Louisa’s annual birthday party. At least, it was for me. I think this was the first one involving a bouncy castle.

Rebecca A 5.93

Here, Rebecca A shares a joke,

Louisa 5.93

perhaps with Louisa.

Louisa and Rebecca A 5.93

They are certainly sharing one here.

Bouncy Castle with children 1

Some had to wait their turn before

Louisa, Matthew C, Hannah, Adam

entering the castle.

Matthew C and Louisa 5.93

Matthew C has managed to join Louisa inside,

Matthew C

where, collapsed in  corner, he appears helpless with laughter;

Matthew C and Adam

recovers, and engages in a race with Adam.

Louisa, Charlotte and Hannah 5.93

Louisa seems to be assessing

Louisa, Charlotte, Matthew C

how high she can leap.

Gemma L

Gemma L

Gemma L

Hannah

 

and Hannah

Hannah

take the measure of the lens.

Charlotte

Charlotte

Louisa, Charlotte, Matthew C

attempt to keep herself upright by leaning on the clown’s knee

Rebecca A and Charlotte

or clutching the roof, while Rebecca makes her way past,

Rebecca A and Louisa

and goes topsy turvy.

Hands and Charlotte

The seven is all hands

Louisa and feet

and feet.

Most of these children, some now with families of their own, have remained lifelong friends.

This evening we dined on roast chicken, sage and onion stuffing, mashed potato, carrots, and broccoli; followed by banoffi pie and cream. I finished the malbec and Jackie drank Hoegaarden.

Shades Are Recommended

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HEALTH WARNING: WEARING OF SHADES IS RECOMMENDED

Having spent much of the day composing and e-mailing a draft complaints letter to the dilatory and devious conveyancing solicitors firm that handled our recent remortgage to our mortgage broker, I was in need of a trip to Mudeford to watch the sun go down. The administrative exercise had involved trawling through documents, letters, e-mails, and such notes as I had made of phone calls or the absence of them; then collating them in a logical order in intelligible prose. Our mortgage adviser couldn’t access my attachment, so I had to cut and paste it and send it as the text of another e-mail.

The elements did not disappoint.

Sunset 1

Shortly before sunset, the orb was bright, but the clouds still retained their slate colours intermingled with streaks of blue.

Sunset 2

A rather large anchor is embedded in concrete on the foreshore. This provided a frame for the scene,

Sunset 4

as did trees

Sunset 3

and grasses.

Sunset 5

Gulls perched

Sunset 6

on moored boats

Gulls

flew low over the water,

Mudeford Harbour

and gathered by the quayside.

Sunset 7

Smoky hues spiralled around blue skies, and gold-tinged clouds,

Sunset 8

gradually darkening as the sun descended.

Sunset 9

All at once

Sunset 12

an orange wash was

Sunset 13

brushed over the skyscape.

Sunset 14

 

As the sun sank the orange pigment

Sunset 15

drizzled down the horizon,

Sunset 16

its remnants

Sunset 17

 

streaking above

Sunset 19

silhouetted walkers

Sunset 18

Sunset 20

and their dogs.

For our dinner this evening, with which I drank Mendoza Argentina malbec 2016, Jackie produce Thai fishcakes on a bed of ratatouille served with breaded prawns, perfect roast potatoes, and crisp cauliflower.

 

 

 

 

 

Mad Max

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It was finger-tingling cold when Jackie continued her winter planting on this sun-bright  morning and I photographed some still lingering blooms.

Pelargoniums, petunias, erigeron

Outside the kitchen door pelargoniums, petunias, and erigeron vie for space.

Pelargoniums

More pelargoniums,

Pelargoniums and verbena

some with autumnal plumage, as in this urn shared with verbenas, continue to spread their colour around.

Geranium Rozanne

Rozanne geraniums add splashes of blue

Clematis Comptesse de Bouchard

palely reflected by clematis Comtesse de Bouchard

Gazebo path

just about thriving on the gazebo

Clematis Cirrhosa

along with the winter flowering Cirrhosa.

Fuchsia 1Fuchsia 2

There are still hardy fuchsias

Fuchsia 3

I may not yet have featured.

Maple

This maple on the grass had been cut down when we arrived three years ago. We are encouraging it to come back to life.

Honesty

Honesty seeds are masquerading as Pauline’s light catchers.

Cryptomeria and bed

They are seen here in the Cryptomeria Bed.

Rose pink climber

The roses to the right of the tree rise over the Oval Bed. As can be seen, there are more to come.

Salvia Hot Lips

Hot Lips salvia,

Nasturtiums

varieties of nasturtium,

Antirrhinum

and even of antirrhinum, still bloom.

On such a day a late afternoon forest drive was essential.

Sway Tower and pony

A pony in a field off South Sway Lane was more interested in the grass than in Sway Tower.

Landscape with gorse

Opposite Longsdale View, where gorse blooms among the bracken,

Isle of Wight, Solent, moors

the Isle of Wight is visible across the moors.

Reflected trees

Along the stretch of Highland Water just outside Brockenhurst,

Stumps by water

where stumps stand like ancient tombstones on one bank,

Trees and Highland Water 1

the deciduous trees

Trees and Highland Water 2

now wear their temporary autumn plumage;

Shadow and reflections

the banks are becoming waterlogged

Trees and reflections 3

enough for arboreal reflections.

Dog in water

It was here that I was introduced to Mad Max, who had no fear of freezing his nether regions.

Forest scene 1

The forest road between Brockenhurst and Beaulieu displayed trees resplendent

Forest scene 2

 

with the last of their glowing golds

Autumn leaves 1

and burnished browns;

Autumn leaves 2

falling fast

Forest scene 3

to carpet the floor.

Ponies 1

As we approached Beaulieu, a pair of backlit ponies prompted Jackie to park the car on the verge and me to wander back to photograph them. Maybe it was something I said,

Pony 1

for, in turn,

Pony 2

they turned tail,

Pony 3

and crossed the road,

Ponies 2

to join companions enjoying greener grass.

The portions of our meal at The Raj two nights ago were so generous that we couldn’t eat it all and brought some home.. Jackie added samosas and onion bahjis  for this evening’s repast, with which I finished the malbec.

 

 

 

 

“He’s Taken A Knock In His Undercarriage”

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This afternoon rugby’s autumn internationals began. On television I watched Scotland v Samoa; Wales v Australia; and the highlights of England v Argentina. I made a few photographs direct from the screen, cropping out the score lines from the top left hand corners in order not to reveal the results to anyone who has recorded the matches.

Scotland v Samoa 1

Here, in the first match, a player who has been tackled attempts to release the ball;

Scotland v Samoa 2

this time it has been released.

Scotland v Samoa 4

Here the chase is on,

Scotland v Samoa 5

ending with a tussle on the touchline.

Scotland v Samoa 6

Wales v Australia 6

Certain infringements result in the setting of scrums where the opposing two sets of eight forwards bind onto each other pushing for possession of the ball tossed between them by the scrum half, here standing poised;

Scotland v Samoa 11

and here placing the ball into the mêlée.

Scotland v Samoa 9

There are strict rules of engagement determining how the teams pack down, demanding a pause at each stage.

Scotland v Samoa 7

Sometimes loose scrums form in play. The ball is then sent back to one’s own side.

Wales v Australia 7

It is the scrum half’s job to pick it up and pass it back along the line of players.

England v Argentina 6

This is how the teams position themselves when there has been a scrum wrestling over possession.

Scotland v Samoa 10

Tries are scored when the ball is grounded

England v Argentina 7

across the opposing goal line.

Scotland v Samoa 17

Sometimes it is reasonably clear that that has happened;

Scotland v Samoa 8

at others it is rather less than apparent.

Scotland v Samoa 13

The man on the ground, having been scragged, has managed here to pass the ball to a team member who is heading for the try, or goal, line. The referee, in order to keep up with the game, is in hot pursuit.

Scotland v Samoa 18

A try is worth five points. Two more may be added by placing the ball on a tee

Scotland v Samoa 14

and kicking it

Scotland v Samoa 15

between the goal posts above the cross bar to perform a conversion.

Scotland v Samoa (Finn Russell)

Careful concentration is required

Wales v Australia 1 (Leigh Halfpenny)

from the specialists who perform this task.

Scotland v Samoa 12

Instructions are periodically mouthed from behind the ball in order to prevent lip-reading.

Scotland v Samoa 19

Team mates generally attempt to pound along in support of those with

England v Argentina 4

or chasing the ball.

Scotland v Samoa 20

Occasionally one man will get clean away

Wales v Australia 9

on his own;

England v Argentina 5

or have a cluster of opposition players between him and his support.

Wales v Australia 2

Hands and feet compete with each other over the ball.

Wales v Australia 3

When the ball has been kicked into touch, or out of play, the two sets of forwards line up alongside each other, it is then thrown between them and caught by one of the players who may be lifted to aid his jump.

Wales v Australia 4

When spectators spot themselves on the large television screen at the ground, they generally attempt to catch the attention of their friends at home.

Wales v Australia 8

Others check out their own photographs on their mobile devices.

Scotland v Samoa 16

It is quite usual for medical attention to be required. Injuries may be comparatively slight;

Wales v Australia 10

if a player is bleeding he must leave the field to be stitched up and/or bandaged, and may be temporarily replaced by ‘a blood replacement’.

Wales v Australia 5

Medics may step onto the field to assess damage and offer assistance. When this gentleman took a break, the commentator offered the opinion that he had “taken a knock in his undercarriage”.

Wales v Australia 11

The opposing players may be tackled by wrapping arms around them as you charge into them.

England v Argentina 3

This cannot be above shoulder height.

England v Argentina 1

It is not permitted to tackle a player in the air;

England v Argentina 2

and if you up-end him you are responsible for his landing safely.

For those unfamiliar with our more civilised national game, I hope this has made it a little more comprehensible.

This evening Jackie and I dined on Mr Chan’s Hordle Chinese Take Away with which I drank more of the malbec.