In bright sunshine at 10 a.m. this morning it was hard to believe that the meteorologists had threatened us with 48 hours of gale force winds from 11 a.m. onwards. Nevertheless forecasts are now much more accurate than they were in our youth, so we battened down the hatches. Thousands of items of garden furniture and millions of hanging baskets – or so it seemed – needed to be brought down to ground level.
First, the patio furniture was lowered. the two teapots in the bottom left corner are for Nugget’s consideration as a prospective new home.
The hanging baskets required careful handling to prevent causing damage before the gales were given the chance to wreak havoc. Chequerboard fuchsia hanging from the arch over the dead end path is shown in the two pictures before those in which Jackie delicately replaces potted petunias. Having stretched a long arm from its pot it had required tying up. I needed to undo this.
All this activity naturally aroused Nugget’s curiosity. At first he hopped about from the rocks to the gravel,
then took up a position on the back of the white chair in the Weeping Birch Bed. The usual magnification from the galleries will show him clearly tweeting “what’s going on?”.
The Head Gardener found room for what she called “the lucky few” in the greenhouse.
This afternoon we took a coastal trip to see what was going on there.
At Milford on Sea a young girl sheltered along the sea wall in an effort to avoid the violence of the waves and the spray. Kite surfers could be seen in the distance near Hurst lighthouse.
Further along, at Barton on Sea, hardy groups clambered on the rocks.
The Isle of wight seemed shrouded in spray.
At Mudeford black headed gulls bobbed buoyant as corks on the surging waves. Although two skilled sailboarders sped along the surface,
another less proficient pair spent much of their time attempting to lodge and right their sail. No sooner had they seemed upright than they were back beneath the surface. I had to admire their persistence.
This evening we dined on crispy duck, spring onions, cucumber, and plum sauce in pancakes; followed by spare ribs in barbecue sauce; with which Jackie drank Hoegaarden and I finished the Saint-Chinian.