An unusual phenomenon is evident in our front garden this year. We have crab apples, normally stripped by blackbirds long before now – still suspended from their branches – standing alongside a winter flowering cherry.
When I endured my flexible cystoscopy on 13th December I was given a form to send back after a fortnight in order to report on whether or not I had an infection. Now I know why. Today Jackie drove me to the GP to obtain some antibiotics.
Before then we took a drive in the forest.
The two ponies always seen at the door of Greatham House near the junction of Sway Road in Brockenhurst, and various attendant donkeys
attracted quite a crowd of visitors, many with cameras. The grey pony, in particular, tended to poke her head through the open front doorway when the owner appeared with goodies.
Several donkeys on the opposite corner of the street attracted their own admirers.
Soon, occasionally coming to an abrupt halt, either to doze or to enjoy a scratch, crossed the road to join their relatives.
As most photographers will know, it is necessary to stand well back from your subject when using a long lens. This becomes rather difficult when your prey – in this case a small donkey in search of treats – is intent upon investigating your camera. One gentleman attempting to flee his moving subject was compelled to wait until the animal became distracted in order to take his opportunity for a shot. Otherwise, each time he turned round the creature continued to bear down upon him.
Jackie, who tried out her new camera today, reprimanded me for standing in the road “like a donkey”. These are two of her images. The woman I was conversing with was telling me that the local council were engaged in a long running feud with the owner of Greatham House who refused to stop feeding the ponies. She said that the two regular equine visitors were a mother and daughter, and that the younger, grey, animal was pregnant. As Jackie said, “she’ll be bringing her foal along soon”.
In the skies over Bransgore a mini murmuration wave swooped, turned, ebbed, and flowed low above the trees.
This evening we dined at Lal Quilla. My main course was lamb Ceylon; Jackie’s Lal Qilla Special; Ian’s chicken tikka masala; and Becky’s Murg something I can’t remember. We shared onion bhajis, various rices and a peshwari naan. Becky drank rosé wine while the rest of us enjoyed Kingfisher.