A Cervine Spectre

Jackie was up in the dark this morning, in time to photograph

our first smattering of snow before the rain washed it away.

This afternoon we drove to Crestwood in Lymington to complete the paperwork and pay a deposit on our new sitting room flooring which will be laid after Christmas. We continued on to the north of the forest by way of

Roger Penny Way where

the gloom could not conceal the burnished gold of bracken

and autumn leaves.

Among the fallen trees

a skeletal cervine spectre remained tethered beside a moss-coated log.

Blissford Hill was not the only thoroughfare becoming waterlogged enough for arboreal reflection.

The pannage season has been extended. Pigs dashed towards us on

Hyde Hill where Jackie parked the Modus ahead of the

billowing sounder, too fast for me to keep up with.

Suddenly they dashed off piste and disappeared into a soggy field.

I needed to wade through sucking mud to reach the gate.

A somewhat perplexed freckled Shetland pony, sharing its field with

two be-rugged horses and an oak tree,ย observed the porcine proceedings.

Many thatched cottages, like this one at North Gorley, were able to admire their coiffure in their weedy green pools.

Since our dinner was being slow-roasted while we were out, I had no qualms that I might have been eating the shoulder of one today’s snuffling pigs with crispy crackling, Yorkshire pudding, creamy mashed potatoes, crunchy carrots, and tender cabbage with most tasty gravy. Jackie drank Hoegaarden and I finished the Fleurie.




  1. At first I thought Jackie was photographing her little friend waiting for his breakfast, but it was just a reflection I think …. Perhaps you will have a White Christmas! Those pigs amuse me so much, they are so very focused! It took me a while but I eventually matched your imagination re the ‘Cervine Spectre’ Maybe I need a second coffee …

  2. Thanks to you I now Know about the pannage season. I enjoy your forested drives very much – all the more reason to go out often.

  3. Beautiful photos! That last one is so wonderful! Nature provided a “mirror” for the cottage to gaze into! ๐Ÿ™‚
    Stay safe and warm!
    We had rain and snow the past 3 days and they are predicting it again for 4 days next week. Brr… ๐Ÿ˜€
    HUGS!!! ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. Roger Penny Way is beautiful, and I liked your description, too: “where the gloom could not conceal the burnished gold of bracken.” Your cervine spectre fits with the French show we’re watching on Netflix, where there appears to be an ancient stag god in the forest. ๐Ÿ™‚

  5. So you had snow! Our first snow is not supposed to fall until next Saturday now. The forecast changes daily.

    I enjoyed the photos from your day, and your cervine specter, too. Good catch, Derrick!

  6. Your pigs seem sleeker and far more well-behaved than the feral hogs that are happily digging up our state. Ours are so destructive, and unutterably prolific capable of producing three litters each year. If they can’t find a way to control them soon, we’ll be up to our hips in hogs.

    1. Yours do seem much bigger. The reason ours have rings in their noses is to prevent them tearing up the terrain, but I wouldn’t fancy the job of ringing feral hogs. Thanks very much, Linda

  7. Snow!! That is certainly a sign the season is inevitable. And what a lovely, curvy Roger Penny Way. You captured it well. I may have not spotted the spectre, but did as soon as your caption alerted me. Great catch!

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