Not A Dog’s Dinner


After a boring morning’s admin, I helped The Head Gardener plant tulip and allium bulbs and flowering chrysanthemums. We then enjoyed a salad lunch and drove to

Lymington harbour,

where the rippling water reflected the boats and the blue sky with its attendant clouds

that had been depicted on the canvas above by a skilled painter.

Rowing boats were moored beside the jetty on the seaward side of which yachts were being berthed.

Squawking gulls landed hoping for titbits.

Other craft were coming and going all the time.

Emerging from the forest of masts, a small ferry boat chugged into harbour,

its master steered it to its mooring,

and the passengers disembarked.

The mother of one family returning to land told me that, on this afternoon of sunshine and showers, they had sailed through heavy rain, so it was only now that the junior pirate had been able to wear his Puffin hat.

Once she had fixed the trophy in place, he trotted off clutching his mother’s hand, while his Dad carried his sibling and everything else.

Walking into the first shot of the ferry boat is another photographer, who, when I showed him my portrait of him, smiled and said: “That’s what photography is for”.

Soon a working boat came into view and came to rest at the fishermen’s corner.

I wasn’t sure what was going on here, but a small terrier’s nose gave her a pretty good idea.

She needed some restraint to keep her away from


the slowly jerking crabs piled on top of each other in strong boxes.

One of these living creatures climbed over the lip of its container and landed on its back on the quayside. In my childhood I had often righted stag beetles in the same predicament, but I didn’t fancy providing a helping hand on this occasion.

Instead, I alerted the young man who had brought in his boat, mentioning that I wasn’t going to pick it up. Describing the crab as an escapee, he demonstrated that it couldn’t pinch because their claws were nipped when they were caught. This certainly wasn’t a dog’s dinner.

Before leaving, I walked along Quay Street

to the bottom of Quay Hill, feeling quite pleased that the car was parked by the waterside, so I wouldn’t have to follow the others scaling the heights. The little dog somewhat impeding the older woman’s progress was happy to continue once the younger woman carrying an infant had torn herself away from the shop windows.

On we travelled to the east of the forest. These ponies on the land along Thorneywood Road were soon to be spooked by a vehicle that turned round the bend towards us. This sent the animals running around in rather frantic circles.

Many others were grazing among the gorse. As so often, one smaller variety incongruously tagged onto the big boys.

Gwen and Yvonne may prefer to skip what follows.

This evening we dined on Jackie’s excellent liver and bacon casserole, mashed potato, carrots and green beans. Jackie drank Hoegaarden and I drank Reserve des Tuguets Madiran 2014.


  1. Quay St looks quite a hard walk, not so much the hill as the uneven brick surface which would be bound to trip me up somewhere along my progress! The cloud pics are my favourite today 🙂

  2. Maybe it’s my screen but your photos appear even better – awesome! So much detail; so much depth and your text adding to the flavour! Great post from a lovely day.

  3. This was a lovely virtual stroll through the magic of photos and text. Thank you, Derrick. I’m glad you finally got to the dog’s dinner, as I wondered from the beginning what you were referring to. 🙂
    I particularly liked the photo of the gulls by the water with clouds reflected it in.

  4. I so enjoyed that harbor and your many “descriptive” sorts of pictures–and those interesting crabs—(though not my choice of meal alive or dead, I’m afraid).

    (And so sorry to hear about a London attack again…terrible times…my best with sympathy to all of you across the pond…)

    1. Very many thanks, Cynthia. Paol’s comment on the crabs reflects my view, too. You are far more understanding re the London attack than your twit of a tweeting president.

  5. I know Jackie doesn’t use recipes, so some months back I found one for liver casserole that was very similar to my grandmother’s, except for one ingredient—apple juice. What does the Culinary Queen say—yea or nay?

  6. Your Lymington Harbour reminded me so much of our Port Fairy fishing harbour, down on the Southwest coast of Victoria, one of my Favourite destinations.

  7. You transported me to the harbour with those well chosen moments captured vividly in images as well as words. The small boats emerging from the forest of masts, the cute little pirate and his family, the photographer, the restless dog having received whiff of the crabs establish the atmosphere firmly.

      1. the scene was so beautiful, it just shows us again, that there is usually more going on then what we first perceive.. you are an observer… =^_^=

  8. I am a firm believer in leaving crabs in the sea. It seems like there is only a ting bit of food from a relatively large animal. But also I noticed that your seagulls have a black spot behind the eye. Dp they all? Or are they just members of a Treasure Island gang?

  9. “…where the rippling water reflected the boats and the blue sky with its attendant clouds…”

    Your resplendent words accompany your breathtaking photos perfectly. How fun that you easily mingle with the subjects of your photographs and poetry!

  10. Beautiful from the wharf scene with smaller watercrafts to the populated, pretty cobblestones to the final sky photos with horses in them. . . All were marvelous, Derrick.

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