Assessing Each Other

This was a mostly dismal, overcast, day which brightened up towards the end of our afternoon forest drive.

Wheatfields are maturing along Lodge Lane, near Beaulieu; blackberries are burgeoning in the hedgerows; wildflowers such as cream and yellow linaria vulgaris, young ferns, and creeping ivies, mingle with exposed tree roots; log piles line the drive into Ashenden; a dead tree clutches at the air.

An adolescent foal, its mother foraging nearby, crossed the lane into

Cripplegate Lane, where its dam soon followed.

Other ponies emerged from Church Lane, East Boldre.

Donkeys and foals congregated at the corner of Norleywood Road, where two of the youngsters were clearly assessing each other.

Note the reflective collar, rejected by a pony, hanging on the road sign.

This evening we dined on Jackie’s spicy pasta arrabbiata with which she drank Mendoza Malbec 2020 and I drank more of the Shiraz.


  1. Every New Forest pony you photograph seems unbelievably beautiful, Derrick!
    Your header image is lovely – the two tinies look as though they have some time before their height will fit the size of their ears 🙂

  2. Forests have a beauty like no other place! The greens, the trees, the moss, the trees in all stages of their lives, the wildflowers, the berries, ETC! A joy to breathe in! 🙂
    You know the donkeys are my faves to see! Those faces! 🙂
    (((HUGS))) 🙂
    PS…“I took a walk in the woods and came out taller than the trees.” – Henry David Thoreau

      1. Yes, I can imagine some of the nighttime accidents. I’ve known horse, back when I was a trail guide, that would take a rider right up to a tree, rub the bridle off, and leave them stranded. They wouldn’t return on schedule, and the guide would make the circuit looking for them. One horse in particular, Junior, would be found happily standing around while the rider sat helplessly on top.

  3. I always enjoy your donkey photos Derrick, I am not sure what my fascination is, but I suppose their care-free ways make me smile …

    1. A faculty colleague of mine has a small farm, where she keeps donkeys. Whenever she’s feeling stressed, she goes off to visit her donkeys. Apparently, a fellow named Floyd is a favorite.

  4. Such bucolic sweetness Derrick. Makes me happy to see. We had ‘dry lightening’ last night. I didn’t even know what this was. I was the only in our house to wake and see it. There was no thunder, no rain, only fire in the sky. Stay safe and well my friend.

  5. I am amazed that all these darling animals are wandering around the lanes as if they are on a sunday stroll. The miniature horses are so very cute!

  6. Last week, in the middle of the day, the neighbour’s dog began barking. I heard the owner calling it to come back, and very shortly our dogs, in the bedroom, at the other end of our house, began barking. Checking out the study window, I saw a young bear running across another neighbour’s yard. 😀 The ear proceeded to keep going down the street, provoking the interest of people & dogs as it sought a less notable location. 😀
    Alas, no pictures – things happened a bit too fast. I am now in the midst of adjusting to a new camera. The old one is getting temperamental.

      1. Thank you, Derrick. It might be the same here. We get an occasional herd of cattle or pigs on a highway but the rancher(s) is with them and obviously moving them from one pasteur land to another.

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