Mothers And Babies

On this the hottest day so far of the hottest May since the 1890s, Jackie worked in the garden all morning. I did a little token dead-heading of poppies and emptied garden refuse into the compost.

After lunch we drove to Ferndene Farm Shop in order to buy salad ingredients. The queue was so awesome that we didn’t do that, but Jackie joined the shorter compost queue while I loaded three 60 litre bags. There were no available trolleys so I had to cart them across the car park. Just 6 bags were left as I started on the second. A woman parked next to me did not compete. When she started on hers I said that normally I would have offered to help, but I had new knees. Another gentleman started on the last four and my companion took her second. I couldn’t do the sums so, of course, I collected her last one and staggered over with it. “Think of it as physiotherapy” she smilingly quipped.

Robert Gill’s garden in Everton Road is one of the highlights of the annual Hordle Scarecrow Trail:

Passing his house today we admired his

tribute to carers

and his creative stumpery.

We had experienced the weight of traffic being back to normal, with a number of camper vans and vehicles toting bicycles, and were not surprised to see the Holmsley Walk car park overspill on the approach road. One family picnicked beside their vehicle blaring loud music. By and large, however, people did keep their physical distance.

Swinging round this site we were delighted to see that we had not entirely missed the first foals during strict lockdown. Human mothers were also out walking with their babies, as were a group of carers with their charges. Unfortunately a dog or two was off the lead. One chased the foal in the third picture into the shrubbery. Its owner was quick to the rescue complete with leash.

Back at home Jackie turned on the sprinkler hose and took a well earned break before preparing the dinner, while I dead-headed roses.

The said dinner consisted of Jackie’s excellent flavoursome egg fried rice with three prawn preparations: tempura; hot and spicy; and salt and pepper, with which the Culinary Queen drank Hoegaarden and I drank Concha Y Toro Reserva Casillero del Diablo Cabernet Sauvignon 2018.

BT have not yet resolved the e-mail problem, and I am much happier with WordPress. Readers may remember that I was shocked by how all my earlier posts had been messed up when I first tried the new editor. Anyone following the link above will see how well they have improved their act. I am very pleased with this and just need to get About, Contact, etc onto the post that readers access.


  1. Goodness, it does look very hot and dry there. The languid ponies convey it as do the depths of the shadows also.

    I quite enjoyed the lack of folks about in my world, as it’s all on again those slower and quieter rambles are done with. I am delighted to hear your gentlemanly instincts are still intact despite those new knees – which are clearly getting stronger! Bravo!!

  2. I’m curious about your temperature, Derrick. What’s normal for this time of the year? Great photos! I loved seeing the foals. Jackie’s meal sounds delish!

  3. I absolutely adore your photos of the foals, Derrick! Either you have a powerful photo lens, or they are extremely tame, to allow you to get so close! Thanks for your delightful post today.

  4. I hate to ask – but is this WordPress nonsense that you speak of something that I will encounter the next time I try to make a post?

    It feels like we all are starting to stretch our boundaries – and I’m glad your stretching included ponies. That one baby facing you head on with his nose and his knobby knees just melted my heart.

    Dinner sounds lovely. Makes me want to try something similar tonight . . .

    1. I’m afraid that from 1st June the new editor will be the default, which is why I have started grappling with it now. We will, however have the option to retain the Classic until 2022. Thanks very much, Jodie. That foal is the one that was chased.

      1. Oh, great. I always retain the old as long as possible so, I hope, all the bugs are fixed when I use it. Thanks for beta testing. : ) – And about the foal – poor baby! I get annoyed with off leash dog owners unless they have perfect control of their dogs.

  5. OHH! And the whole scene at the compost place. Did I understand correctly? The woman next to you let you take your fill. And then while she was taking hers, a rude interloper started grabbing. And so you got an extra and gave it to her?? If that is the case, I want you to be my next president.

  6. I was wondering about restrictions there. Our state went to let the county govern regulations at this point. Our county lifted all regulations today because we never had any positive cases.

  7. I was so impressed with your strength, and was feeling rather a weakling, as I can barely carry a forty pound bag of organic soil. Then I remembered: your system is different, and sixty kilograms isn’t sixty pounds!

    1. πŸ™‚ I’m pleased to have given you an opportunity to revise your sums. Now you can help me – are litres (what the bags were) the same as kilos? Thanks very much, Linda.

  8. You are proof enough that great souls get gifted with free tips on physiotherapy. I am glad to see life regaining its vigour manifest in frolicking folks and errant dogs that chase little colts into bushes.

  9. It’s such a delight to see the foals! I’m glad the dog’s owner regained control and the chased foal was okay. You’ve got me researching stumpery. It doesn’t seem very popular in the US, but I love using old logs as borders and decorating with what nature drops. You certainly earned that dinner and then some! I hope you get to take it easy tomorrow.

  10. How wonderful of you to help that lady. Remember: Be kind to your knees, too. Are they feeling okay?!

    The foals are THE bestest and your photos of them are lovely! πŸ™‚

    Robert Gill has creativity and your photos of it make me smile! πŸ™‚

    (((HUGS))) πŸ™‚

  11. Those new foals are adorable. I’m glad the woman got her dog back on leash. We seem to have a problem in this country of dogs being left off leash. I liked the tribute of caregivers, too.
    You were very kind to help that woman with the bags of compost!

    I’m glad the WP situation is improving. ?

  12. I went to the local nursery for compost but they were sold out. They never sell out. He thought it was because of the lockdown gardeners.
    Blisteringly hot yesterday, I am a full time water carrier. A bit fresher today but still no rain.
    I am commenting without seeing your pictures because the are still huge in my browser!

  13. Those foals are utterly delightful. Must admit that it worries me to see people rushing to be out and about. The same is happening here, too. Sigh.

  14. A lovely post, Derrick. I love all the baby animals out and about this spring. And I enjoyed the creativity of Gill’s garden. Thanks for the smile. πŸ™‚

    1. The prawns are becoming a favourite – especially as they are lap pre-prepared. Jackie then makes the rice from scratch. Thanks very m much, Liz.

  15. Just got to view this delightful post. As a former equine owner, the shots of the mares and foals were a nice memory. I have yet to explore the new WP editor. I did get into it by mistake a while back, and quickly reverted back to the “Classic” version. I suppose I’ll have to try…..sigh, you know, the old dog new tricks thing.

  16. I’m on another catch-up- no idea where the time has gone during the last couple of days.

    Oh, I love those pictures of the mare and foal, how lovely they are.
    I’m sorry you didn’t manage to buy your salad ingredients. Yesterday was quite warm for us too, but I think today is the hottest day, hardly any breeze and that’s saying something for up here where we are high up and it’s always windy.

      1. My third and final guide will be published this afternoon. I wrote the guide this morning, but broke off from writing the post to entertain my garden visitors! It’s basically a condensed version of the other two, but you don’t need it you have it mastered!

  17. This makes me nostalgic for such events as scarecrow trails; how many festivals will be cancelled this summer, traditions on hold? Still, it has been glorious weather, and nature has been peacefully doing her thing. Beautiful photos.

  18. I do remember you scarecrow post from last year, Derrick; it was delightful.
    The baby foals are adorable, and I am glad to see that people are observing social distancing. Not so here, unfortunately.

  19. Lovely update, Derrick. It is a shame that quiet spots have now become busy spots but people must be so relieved that they can leave the confines of towns and cities. I’m glad that you were still able to experience the foals and that your knees didn’t give way. I’m not sure I could have carried 3 x 60 litre bags of compost!

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