Setting The Pace

Today we drove to Hale for a hearty picnic.

Travelling via the lanes of Nomansland we lost our way for a while, although the route was a pretty one.

Sitting on a bench in silence save for the soughing of the chill breeze in the woodland behind us, we hugged our sides in efforts to keep warm until a woman shouted in vain to call her Labrador away from sniffing round our food. We were wondering whether the only signs of

life were to be lost walkers and their animals when the advancing

thudding of a troop of ponies revealed the animals to be on a training run. The last five of the pictures in this gallery are by Jackie, who also

photographed the diminutive creature which had clearly been setting the pace rolling in the grass and nuzzling its larger companion –

a pairing I had also witnessed.

Jackie also photographed the thatched cottages, the millennium memorial sculpture, and the cricket pitch rollers that don’t seem to have been in service yet this season.

This evening we dined on Jackie’s tasty liver and bacon casserole; boiled potatoes; crunchy carrots and firm broccoli with which I drank Chilean Malbec reserva privada 2022.


  1. What a lovely outing! I think I spotted a large pork pie and a crunchy salad with cheese for lunch.
    No sign of summer here on the North Norfolk coast.
    Liver and bacon casserole sounds absolutely terrific. Cheers!

    1. Thank you very much, Dina. The sunshine was deceptive – it was rather chilly

  2. Although my eye was initially drawn to the pork pie I couldn’t help noticing that there appears to be a lot of potential to add horse muck to your compost heap. Looks like a lovely day.

    1. Yes, it was – albeit chilly. Thanks very much, Quercus. We have seen people out with collecting buckets

      1. I am just old enough to remember horse drawn rag and bone men in Blackburn, and people nipping out to pick up the leavings “for the rhubarb”. I don’t know why it was always rhubarb, probably because that was all they grew in their back yards.

  3. The stampede of horses was magnificent. The sight of that dog on a long lead struck fear into the heart of this cyclist. Long leads and cyclists do not get on.

    1. Thanks very much, Tootlepedal. You certainly wouldn’t want to get tangled up in one of those

  4. I love picnics especially when there’s views to enjoy. Can a smaller breed of pony breed with a larger breed? We sometimes see old machinery sculptured from recycled material but nit often.

    1. Thank you very much, Chrissy. I imagine different sizes of pony can breed provided they can work out the logistics. The interesting thing about those rollers is that the older one looks to outlast the modern one.

  5. You and Jackie have done a great job portraying the energy of the ponies – both the boisterous excitement and sweet nuzzlings. Nomansland looks lovely. Sometimes it’s fun to get a little lost in the forest.

  6. Wonderful photos, Jackie and Derrick! And so much action going on! (Lots of -ing words in today posting! 🙂 ) Picnic-ing is always a fun activity! ‘Tis a hearty meal, indeed! And that pairing of the two sweethearts nuzzling is my fave photo today!
    (((HUGS))) ❤️❤️

  7. It looks like a beautiful day, even if chilly. I think you had an onslaught of wonder after the relative silence. I love the action shots of the running ponies, and the nuzzling ones are adorable.

    You got lost on such a lovely lane.

  8. I would happily get lost on such a pretty lane on the regular!
    Love the horses that roam so freely in your area.
    That lunch looked mighty fine, too.

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