This morning I completed an e-mail exchange with Barrie Haynes who had sent me a copy of his latest novel, “Adam”.
The book carries a good, intriguing, story written in tight, fast-moving, prose with nothing superfluous.
Despite its five star rating on Amazon, the work, on account of the sexual innuendos which some will find humorous, will not appeal to all tastes. There is however no bad language. Barrie tells me that a sampler can be read on that site in order to allow potential buyers to make their own judgement.
Today we took a break from gardening, although Jackie did perform some watering, weeding, and dead heading after lunch.
Alongside the A338 we stopped to photograph a splendid Virginia creeper we have often admired.
Once we are into the north of the forest we are bound to encounter donkeys,
such as these with their sometimes somnolent foals at Ibsley,
where ponies gather in less numbers. One of the latter equines has a shared hairdresser with
the elegant alpacas resident at Hockey’s Farm, where
we lunched alfresco on account of Covid restrictions. Their excellent system provides a takeaway service which is delivered outside where we are permitted to eat it. This, today, was somewhat disconcerting as the cooing, twittering, and gentle birdsong emanating from the aviary
beside which we sat was constantly shattered by
the machine-gun rattle of acorns crashing onto the corrugated perspex roof. Some ricocheted downward. I sat on one that had come to rest on my chair.
It was Jackie who photographed the aviary guide and the first three of these gallery images.
We were fortunate not to have been lunching beneath the conker tree a hundred yards or so along the road.
This lane and wall outside Stuckton, where a speckled wood butterfly settled on its ivy cladding, were dappled by sunlight
that also cast shadows across the Godshill end of Ringwood Road thus camouflaging wandering ponies.
This evening we dined on spicy pizza and chicken salad with which Jackie drank Hoegaarden and I finished the Douro.
A pleasant, easy-going day! You two deserve it!
Thanks very much, GP
Delightful images, Derrick. The donkey with head laid under the fence post is so darn cute in its blissful nap.
Thanks very much, Maj
We are quite familiar with the racket raised by parrots visiting us from the nearby Parrot Jungle. No acorn fuselage, though.
The black and white shadowy lane photo and the color one of the same lane are both fabulous in their own ways. I have thoroughly enjoyed both, Derrick.
I’m so pleased, Dolly. Thanks very much.
The pleasure is mine, Derrick.
You two all pruned out?
Not really. If we had a plum tree I might have managed a witty response. Thanks a lot, Geoff.
An interesting day all round. How lovely to receive a novel in the mail!
Indeed. Thanks very much, Anne.
I would be tempted to take one of the donkeys home.
Very tempting, Sheree. Thanks very much.
Your photos of the donkey foals Derrick are definitely cute, and I’m smiling broadly here, early Saturday morning (7.00am)… and a warm humid spring day, of 25’C…
Perfect. Thanks very much, Ivor.
There is something about alpaca faces that is just so darned appealing!
There really is – especially with a straw in its mouth 🙂 Thanks very much, Liz
What an exciting lunch.
An adventure, Tootlepedal. Thanks a lot.
Hi Derrick – the book with the innuendos is not my cup of tea – but we all
Like different things – eh?
Tell Jackie I liked her photos too- and the Virginia creeper was so nice and vibrant
We do, indeed Yvette. Jackie will be pleased, as am I. Thanks very much.
Not much can beat and egg and bacon sandwich!
Agreed. Thanks very much, John.
Looks like a fabulous lunch. I took off from the garden today as well. Will be launching back at it tomorrow. That Virginia creeper…is really lovely, but likely an invasive species in your neck of the woods. I Was a little alarmed at how it had overtaken the tree. It may need the treatment recently given the wisteria…
We are about to work on our own Virginia creeper which has now started to trail across the gravel on the back drive. 🙂 Our restrictions are likely coming back, so we may not have that lunch experience again for a while. Enjoy your gardens. Thanks very much, Lisa.
The wall with creepers looks fabulous, and young donkeys look downcast, but that may be a survival trick. That was a disconcerting lunch experience amidst the rat-a-tat of acorns. I suspect alpacas stand somewhere between a pony and a camel, but evolutionary forces may have better ideas. The parakeets are cute.
Thank you very much for your close reading and commenting – as always, Uma.
That is some Virginia creeper!
It certainly is, Laurie. Thanks very much.
I’m glad you and Jackie took it easy and enjoyed some different sights. I don’t believe I’ve ever seen Virginia creeper so red or so big! The conkers look like scary eyeballs, while alpaca eyes are always cute.
Thank you so much, JoAnna.
What an adorable little guy that first one was, inspite (or perhaps because of) the bad haircut
🙂 Thanks very much, Judy
A pretty day with dappling and adorable animals.
Thanks very much, Luanne
I enjoyed your tour of the forest, farm and aviary, Derrick and Jackie!
I am familiar with falling acorns. It is that time of year again. 🙂
🙂 Thanks very much, Lavinia. The pigs will soon be freed for pannage.
I’m sorry to see (from a newscast) that Lockdown is on the return for you … but then I see your delicious garden and I know you will be happy with what you are looking at until – your trips out will come again.
I enjoyed reading and looking at the photos that unfolded for you today including noticing a “parrot” from New Zealand…
Thank you so much, Cedar
What a lovely relaxing day. The donkey shots are gorgeous especially the sleeping foal.
Jackie loved that one, Sue. Thanks very much
What will happen to conkers now Covid-19 has arrived? Will participants make it even more dangerous by using a six feet piece of string and whirling it round their heads ?
Or will somebody invent Virtual Conkers, played on Zoom ?
Unfortunately I don’t think anyone plays it any more, but I like the image you conjure up. Thanks very much, John
What a wonderful day! I’m so glad!
Seeing those donkeys, alpacas, ponies, and birds made my day wonderful! 🙂 Thank you! 🙂
Love the sleepy foal. Aw. 🙂
Those birds and their “talking” and “singing” would be sweet company to me!
For some reason, the plants that weep, creep, wander, grow up other things, always make me smile! 🙂
Those last two photos are spectacular, Derrick!
Thank you so much, Carolyn X
PS…from your title I wondered if any of these amazing creatures with stunning hair went to Peter to get styled. ??? Ha! 😀
Your closing shot is superb.
Thank you very much, Rupali. I’m pleased you think so
Gorgeous photos as always. Sounds like an amazing adventure as always!
Thank you so much, Lisa
Great captures Derrick! I always smile at alpaca’s hairdos.
Thanks very much, Val 🙂
Such varied and beautiful fauna and flora.
Hope you are both keeping well and staying safe.
We are, thank you very much, Melanie X
So good to hear.
I love the alpacas. Great shots, Derrick.
Thank you so much, Jill
An interesting lunch with lots of sound effects.
That Virginia creeper is wonderful. So many beautiful photos–I particularly like the last three.
Thank you very much, Merril. I was quite pleased with those.
Great minds. . .?
delightful images as always, Derrick. the cascading Virginia Creeper is an eye catcher. the sleeping foals make me smile but the Alpacas for me, are truly winners. they are beautiful! glad you both had a wonderful and relaxed day! 🙂
Thanks very much, Lola. You can’t help but smile at an alpaca. 🙂
Those donkeys are so cute ? and the alpacas too ? Wonderful day ?
Thank you very much, Ribana
Hahaha those alpacas gave me a good giggle – so cute. And that donkey foal laying on the ground really looks like he’s smiling!!! 🙂 <3
Thank you very much, M.B. Those animals both have smiley faces. X
What a nice day – baby donkeys are the cutest things!
They are, Barbara. Thanks very much.
I love the pictures and the fallen oak tree. They are magnificent. .