La Chouette

Jackie was able to confirm the neighbourly status of our two resident robins. As she worked on the New Bed Nugget pottered around unconcernedly while his rival quietly chirped from the larch along the back drive.

An owl, strictly une chouette, or perhaps un hibou, now stands on the retaining breeze block wall. Some years ago, Mum began sticking labels beneath gifts she had received stating the name of the donor who would receive them when she departs this earth. Not so long ago I told her I wouldn’t give her anything I did not want back when the time came. Now she lives in Woodpeckers Care Home in Brockenhurst and her own bungalow is being cleared for sale to fund her care, we are receiving these presents prematurely. I bought la chouette de ma mere in France a few years ago.

At about 10 a.m. we set off in the direction of Eyeworth Pond, but became diverted en route.

Jackie pulled over onto the verge of Roger Penny Way so that I could photograph

a small Shetland pony blending in with the autumn palette.

Within just a few yards from this cropping creature I focussed on three discarded drink containers nestling among the fallen leaves. I could have captured more.

From the opposite side of the road I noticed a pair of golfers apparently oblivious of the pony.

The forest scenes,

including those featuring fallen roots

and branches making their own ecological contribution, set me on an impromptu

fungal foray. As I squelched among uneven damp terrain, ducked prickly holly limbs, and, like the fungi, clambered over arboreal refuse, I considered that, piercing the fallen foliage carpet; nibbled by forest fauna; scaling severed ivy still clinging to living trees, these natural overnight miracles had far more to offer that detritus lobbed from vehicles.

These delectable morsels made me savour the thought of poached eggs for breakfast. As I am no mycologist I wasn’t tempted to take them home.

We didn’t proceed to Eyeworth, but returned home for lunch.

This evening we dined on Jackie’s spicy hot pasta arrabbiata with which she drank Hoegaarden and I drank Barossa Valley Shiraz, 2016.




  1. I do love to see forests where nature is allowed to take her course and do her work unaided by human hands. The array of fungus is wonderful and you are very wise to leave them be – I think I see two types that are definite no-no’s. The little pony is a thing of beauty as is the general autumnal hue of all the photos – except the plastic crap of course. I saw a clip once of a guy who tossed his rubbish out of his SUV window while sitting in a traffic holdup and the fellow behind got out of his car, gathered up the rubbish and tossed it back into the SUV. Fabulous response! And the owl. Mustn’t forget the owl – it’s lovely and I’m also really glad to hear you have robin detente in your garden.

    1. Thanks very much, Pauline. Your usual lovely comments. The SUV story is inspirational. The ‘robin detente’ is a good phrase. Jackie has now bought a robin feeder for the lad in the larch.

    1. Thanks very much, Jill. It is very difficult to stop on Roger Penny Way, but there are numerous photo opportunities. Now I can wander about again we’ll probably do a bit more.

  2. The photos of the branches and fungi are wonderful. Perhaps you can have some purchased mushrooms with your eggs. It is a shame about that trash–it seems there are some people everywhere who are lazy and ignorant.
    I agree with Pauline about the robins, and I love her phrase “robin detente.” ๐Ÿ™‚

  3. The tree funguses are interesting. I have never seen them. Empty bottles and cans strewn in the forest are quite universal. Here in Wyoming I’ve seen worse ones that I don’t even want to mention here.

  4. It makes me so angry! Why people need to throw their rubbish into the forest? Would they like others to throw rubbish in their home? Sick people….
    However, beautiful pictures as always! The pony is so so cute ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. Playing golf last week I saw a young woman picking all sorts of fungi, she had a big collection and I asked her if they were all safe to eat. She assured me that they were and started to tell me about each variety. I could easily have stayed chatting for longer but the group behind were catching me up. Despite the assurances I didn’t have the courage to take any. I get my mushrooms in ALDI!
    Great detail shots of those tree roots etc.

  6. Would that be une chouette or une chouette chouette?? ๐Ÿ˜‰ (I have her sibling in my garden!)

    I would have stopped the car for the pony too – what a magnificent scene for the season! Love his blonde eyelashes. ๐Ÿ™‚ (And how his tail brushes the leaf litter behind him as he munches and meanders).

    A veritable feast of mushrooms and lichens, mosses and leaves matched only by the feast of eloquence in your commentary. I don’t believe there will be any eating of mushrooms or your words today, though! ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Very happy to hear Nugget and his nemesis have found Peace in our Time! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  7. Your forest photos are beautiful! Especially love the fungi-ladder on that tree! Life is teaming and buzzing even when no one notices. Thank you for noticing and for capturing it so wonderfully in photos! ๐Ÿ™‚

    That close up of the sweet pony face with the long eyelashes…OHMYGOSH! ๐Ÿ™‚

    I love mushrooms, but will not pick and eat any wild ones! ๐Ÿ˜ฎ HA!

    So sad that people throw their trash wherever and apparently don’t think a thing about it. ๐Ÿ™

    I have a friend Gilda who did what your Mum has done…with labels on the bottoms of things, so when she passes her belongings get to those who would enjoy them. That owl is very lovely. I used to collect owl art, etc., but had to stop. ๐Ÿ™‚ They were taking over our hoot…er…I mean…home! ๐Ÿ˜‰
    HUGS!!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. Thanks Jackie for pulling over and letting Derrick photograph all these different parts of Nature. All except human trash that is. With all the work you two do to enhance the world’s beauty, there is always someone so lazy or self-centered that they treat our planet so carelessly – sad.

  9. It makes me sad to see the rubbish tossed into the beautiful wild areas. I canโ€™t fathom someone doing this. Thanks for your photographic essays. And thanks for Nugget.

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