Commandeering Cattle Go Unchallenged

Who cares whether we have followed the meteorologists into autumn or await the equinox on 21st of this month? This morning was bright, sunny, and warm. We took an early trip into the forest where I walked for half an hour along the Rhinefield Ornamental Drive.

There was still enough water to carry reflections in the now very shallow stream that is spanned by Rhinefield Road.

Shadows dappled the forest floor strewn with pine cones and gnarled roots of the giant Douglas firs morphed into stumbling stones along the footpath;

and leaving imprints on the trunks.

Bracken, mossy stumps, fallen trees, and fungus abound. Notice how the spears of grass pierce these Danish pastry lookalikes.

So silent was the air that voices of walkers on the other side of the road could be heard.

Most schoolchildren have now returned home, leaving the forest to me; to the above mentioned walkers; to couples with or without dogs; and of course,

to the returning ponies.

Highland cattle have now commandeered the almost dried-up paddling pond at Whitemoor. Here ponies adopt sensible discretion and leave the big horned beasties unchallenged.

Later I was due to have Peter cut my hair. I wondered whether my barber would fancy having a go at these creatures, flies and all.

Before keeping my appointment I printed this picture Jackie had taken on 19th July when I had my last one, and presented it to Peter.

When we arrived there was another Derrick sitting waiting. Apparently he and I sound the same on the phone. This gentleman’s appointment had been an hour earlier than mine anyway. To settle the confusion I stepped aside and rebooked for a couple of hours later. Jackie had visited the charity shop seeking another choice of teapot home for Nugget. I joined her there and explained what had happened. The shop volunteer joined in the conversation with the observation “what if you had been waiting for results and they had been given to him?”. “I only want him to cut my hair”, said I. The woman had, of course, thought we were talking about a medical appointment. And here was I thinking I look quite healthy now.

This evening we dined on Jackie’s sumptuous sausages in red wine; new potatoes sliced and roasted in their skins; crunchy carrots; and tender cabbage and runner beans from the garden. She drank Hoegaarden and I finished the Malbec.


  1. I do like that pic of you and your happy barber πŸ™‚ Hope the hair got cut eventually and you look as dapper as ever! Odd looking fungi and shadows of leaves on tree trunks are always winners <3

  2. I particularly like the photos of the reflections in the water and the leaf shadows. Lovely.
    That is funny about the mix-up in the barber shop. Next time you book an appointment, you’ll have to say “Derrick the photographer.”

  3. Thank you for allowing me to walk with you and hear your delightful commentary along the way. I love those big horned cattle with the long manes. Yes, a haircut might improve their vision! I’m glad the rearranged hair appt allowed you to squeeze in some extra fun with Jackie. Cheers! I like Malbec, too, but not as much as Zinfandel. ❀️?

    1. Thanks very much, Gary. Back in the ’60s, Jackie had an interesting encounter with Dave Prowse. I was engaged in cricket nets at Crystal Palace. As I left the changing room I saw her talking to the man outside the weights room. He had been explaining that she was putting off his men because the room had a glass wall. A slightly scary moment πŸ™‚

  4. Confusions abound! I love the textures in the photos before the animals. Those horn cows are something else! Really beautiful. Or are they not cows? Are they boys?

    1. I know one was a boy because the shadow of his willy was reflected on the water of one of the pictures I didn’t use. I’m so pleased someone asked me that, Luanne. Thank you very much.

      1. Hah, you should have used that one! So interesting. So maybe they run together, the males and females? That is so different from regular cows here.

  5. You have dappled light, too! As the poet said, “Glory be to God for dappled things” — not to mention those wonderful cattle, and those woodland “pastries.” When I first saw them, I thought of the kolaches that are common here; they’re the Czech version of the Danish pastries.

  6. Oh, goodness, the mixups! I hope you eventually got your haircut and all is well. You look pretty healthy to me, Derrick, so I hope you don’t take the person’s thoughts amiss!

  7. Makes such a difference when the tourists go home and peace returns to the forest.

    It’s windy, chilly and raining here, so no change from summer really. Last night I went to bed early wearing bed socks, well for a little while until I warmed up.

    Your last night’s supper was very similar to the one I have planned for tonight, and even now at breakfast time I’m looking forward to it.

  8. Peter looks like a really fun guy! πŸ˜€
    And, wow, look at the fungi that looks like berry pastry-pies! πŸ˜€
    Love your light/shadow photos AND your reflection photos! Beautiful! πŸ™‚
    It would be smart let those cattle do their own thing! πŸ˜‰
    HUGS!!! to you and Jackie! Tweets!!! to Nugget! πŸ™‚
    PS…You DO look healthy…and happy…and handsome!

  9. Love the reflections and shadow photo’s from the forest, great work. πŸ™‚

    “Stumbling stones” is a very apt description… as is Big Horned Beasties (said in my best Highland accent – that i borrowed from Tim the Enchanter in Monty Python and the Holy Grail). πŸ™‚

    Hope Nugget likes Jackie’s choice of home. πŸ™‚

  10. The forest looks grand this time of year and it seems the wildlife agree. Thank you for posting all the images you know I love.
    Tell Peter he might better add your last name initial to avoid confusion with the other Derrick?

  11. Your photos are splendid! I love the reflection of the tree in the water while you can still see the stones at the bottom, and the leaf shadows on the trunk of the tree. Those cattle look great with all that hair and when you mentioned the barber, that was my first thought too: wonder if he’d want to have a go at the bangs on the bovines.

  12. I did have to laugh at the hairdresser vs medical appointment misunderstanding. I understand people’s starting point is themselves, so in this case the person’s thoughts were possibly on an ailment they or someone else might have.

    Anyway, amazing fungus.

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