Lunch At The Rising Sun

On a morning of sunny intervals, Jackie and I nipped out to buy bread and took the opportunity for a short forest drive.

The heather on the moorland straddling Holmsley Passage is glowing purple, and the bracken beginning to yellow.

Several cyclists crossed Holmsley Passage in their trip along the gravelled path converted from former railway tracks of one of the lines destroyed by the Beeching/Marples combination of the 1960s.

Ponies and foals were cropping the verges of Bisterne Close.

We lunched with Mat, Tess, and Poppy at The Rising Sun at Bashley. Despite the hundreds of customers in this extensive establishment, we were all impressed with the speed and efficiency of the service and the excellence of the meals. Mine consisted of steak and ale pie, chips, peas, carrots, and cabbage with thick, meaty gravy, followed by ginger sponge and custard. I drank Otter ale.

There were not quite as many ponies outside the pub as in this image from 2017, but enough to give credibility to my prediction that there would be a sighting.

Our granddaughter met another contemporary called Poppy and her sister Florence – the names of our Poppy and her cousin, Becky’s daughter.

Afterwards, Tess and Poppy drove off to a beach, while the rest of us returned home and flopped.

Later, the others grazed while I didn’t.

Rolling Over And Thinking About It

This morning I watched the Channel 4 broadcast from Ahmedabad of the last rites of the English Cricket tour of India.

Soon after lunch we visited the pharmacy at Milford on Sea, then drove into the forest.

At Norleywood Car Park we found I was not the only person interested in photographing the wild life. The gentleman in the last two images in this gallery adopted an enviable position from which to obtain his pictures. I was happy to explain to the woman in the first three photographs the story of

the Shetland ponies, which cropped the grass,

ignoring the fallen trees.

Along the road to Beaulieu, many of the trees stand in nature’s water buckets throughout the winter.

Perhaps the ponies gathered here today wished to be near their water source.

I really identified with the seated pony in the final image of the above gallery. All these equine adults when seeking to rise to their feet adopt the practice of first rolling over and thinking about it before stiffly staggering up. This, of course, is why I found the earlier photographer’s position enviable.

Driving along Saint Leonard’s Road past a waterlogged verge, Jackie noticed that the recent drop in the water level had left the surface algae drying on reflected bramble washing lines. These are her pictures;

these are mine.

At the corner of Saint Leonard’s and Norleywood Roads a pony drinking gazpacho soup took umbrage at my attention, shook her head, and sped off into the gorse.

It was a rather startled cockerel that I photographed along South Baddersley Road. Seconds earlier he had been canoodling with a group of guinea fowl. When I unsuccessfully attempted to focus on them they took off, loudly flapping and squawking. He must have wondered what he had done to upset them.

This evening we dined on oven fish and chips, pickled onions, and wallies, with which we finished the Sauvignon Blanc.

Knickerbocker Glory

I did a little bit of dead-heading in the Rose Garden this morning, and watched the Wimbledon men’s semi-finals this afternoon.

Between matches, I took a break and wandered around the garden, particularly to see how the agapanthuses are coming along. The first image shows them against the backcloth of the Palm Bed, on the edge of which they are situated; the second looks out from that bed; and the third down the Gazebo Path.

Here is another view of the Palm Bed,opposite which we have this scene from the corner of Margery’s Bed.

Saint John’s wort glows at the entrance to the Rose Garden.

A fly also took a break on a white sweet pea.

Continuing with ‘A Knight’s Tale’ I added some new material and edited extracts from ‘Mugging’

and from ‘Tom’

The picture of Tom has been extracted from this school photograph featured in ‘Did You Mean The Off Break?’ 

This evening we dined on Jackie’s superb steak and onion pie in proper short crust pastry, with new potatoes, crisp carrots and spring greens. I drank more of the Fronton, then  became  rather excited when I thought dessert was to be knickerbocker glory, but it turned out to be

Hydgrangea in vase

hydrangea in a vase, so we settled for a Magnum each.

No Sale

Deer in forest – Version 2

Here is yesterday’s camouflaged deer, in the centre of the complete shot. As always. clicking on my images enlarges them. If once is not enough, a second gives a supersize.

Garden 1Garden 2Garden 3

Splendid sunlight lit upon the garden today as, leaving Aaron to his work, we drove to the final coffee morning of the exhibition.

Bench - Ace ReclaimGate reset

Aaron completed the painting of the Ace Reclaim bench and reset the front side gate. The brick will hold it firm until the concrete, which he has tastefully covered with gravel, has set.

Unfortunately, the exhibition was less than successful. Attendance was meagre and no pictures, neither mine nor anyone else’s, were sold, although a number of my cards found buyers. We did however enjoy a pleasant couple of hours with our friends and a few of theirs.

This evening we dined on beefburgers, chips, cauliflower cheese, leeks, and tomatoes. I drank more of the madiran.