Otherwise She Would Block The Road

Early this morning I watched recordings of the Women’s rugby World Cup match between USA and Japan, and between Wales and New Zealand.

Later, I telephoned O2 to ask once more for the PAC Code. I was connected to the Sales team. Carl, the man I spoke to, was very helpful and immediately sent the code – twice because it had not arrived. He then realised it had not been delivered because mine was reported as an invalid number. I pointed out that that had not stopped them sending the six unwelcome and, in the circumstances irrelevant, texts on the previous two days.

He left me on hold while seeking advice. He then transferred me to Customer Services. I offered the opinion that, given this was all about my leaving, that was surely the department to which I should have been sent first.

Before Customer Services answered we were disconnected. I heard no more.

This called for a postprandial forest drive.

“Slosh, slosh”, went the heavy breathing Tamworth pigs on Coach Hill Lane outside Burley

as they smilingly shuffled and snuffled around hoovering up the plentiful acorns

falling from the trees overhanging

this narrow, winding, lane

with its homes hidden behind intriguing garden gates.

Many of the woodland verges, like these running all the way through Shobley, where autumn’s brush-strokes are as yet barely adding seasonal colour, are now lined with posts placed to prevent parking of vehicles churning countryside vegetation. When Jackie drops me off for a photo foray in such an area she drives on and comes back for me – otherwise she would block the road just as the pigs were doing.

This evening we dined on roast lamb with crisp Yorkshire pudding and roast potatoes including the softer sweet variety; crunchy carrots; firm cauliflower, broccoli and Brussels sprouts; and meaty gravy, with which Jackie drank Hoegaarden and I drank more of the Puglia Primitivo.


  1. You are watching rugby and we are very much involved with our Phillies baseball and our beloved Eagles here in South Jersey. Both teams are having a great run.
    I love your pigs photos. They look really healthy and happy.

  2. I thought there was a little round bell in the acorn photo. I did a double take and even then it looked like a bell. Dear little piggies. At least they’re clean.

  3. Oh, gosh, and golly, on your phone company travails! ๐Ÿ˜ฎ ๐Ÿ™
    So glad you got out and about to see, and photograph, the beauty and those pinky porky pigs so pretty! ๐Ÿ™‚ I hope that brought some smiles and peace to you! ๐Ÿ™‚
    GREAT title…intriguing and leads to us readers wanting to do some reading! ๐Ÿ˜‰
    (((HUGS))) โค๏ธ ๐Ÿ™‚

  4. I loved your phone conversation story. It really cheers me up to know that I am not the only only to have to put up with this sort of stuff.

    You would have thought that the road authorities would put in special reserved parking places for photographers.

    1. I now have visions of Derrick wearing a lanyard with the words Press Photographer emblazoned all the way around! ? and the badge of course.

  5. Ours was roast pork , mashed and roast potatoes, cabbage & apple sauce (Joshua forgot to buy the cauliflower), otherwise everything else was the same as yours, oh and leeks in cheese sauce. He added the leeks as extra veg because Daisy is a vegetarian.
    I was told off for offering adviceโ€ฆ. โ€˜Sounds like youโ€™re feeling better, do you want to do this?โ€™

    I do love the Tamworths.

  6. It seems the pigs are far more certain to find acorns than your phone company employees are to find bits of relevant information, no matter how long they snuffle about!

  7. Good luck with the phone. That sort of thing seems to be endless once it starts going wrong. Meanwhile, if you Google “pig wallpaper” I think I see a solution to your problem. Just slap it on the car and Jackie can park anywhere she likes, disguised as a pannage snaffling pig.

  8. Like Liz, the word, saga, came to mind in reading your ordeal with the phone company. I’m glad there are other options and glad you got the code. Nice looking pigs. I like the hair color. ๐Ÿ™‚

  9. You have highlighted some rather attractive looking pigs today. While the posts may seem a nuisance, they are very necessary as vehicles can cause irreparable damage when frequently parked on – or turning around on – the verges in such a forested area. I hope the tranquility of the drive helped to restore a sense of balance for you both.

  10. I love all these free roaming farm animals! I never saw this. I lived in Burford when I was in grad school for three months in summer in a gardeners cottage on an estate owned by an interesting family. I never saw animals wandering the lanes. But the gardeners cottage was ancient, beautiful and amazing. It had these self cloning rose bushes that were hundreds of years old and so productive. I cut and lived with bunches of roses weekly, falling asleep each night with their intoxicating scent. England is so beautiful.

  11. A friend of mine who was in the UK (on her way home now) posted some pictures of the New Forest where they had been held up by cattle on the road … I wasn’t surprised as so often you too – held up by animals on the road!
    Hope you are soon sorted with your phone…

  12. This must be incredibly, infuriatingly frustrating for you, Derrick. Sadly, these “customer service” stories have become all too familiar. I’m glad you could blow off steam with a forest drive and the chance to encounter and photograph those delightful pigs.

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