The Still Before The Storm

This morning, fearing for the garden during the very heavy storm we are due to experience tomorrow, Jackie wandered around our plot with her camera in order to record such an unusual array of blooms for this time of the year.

First, she had to pander to Nugget who was convinced that his fans would like to admire his back view.

Tete-a-tetes and irises were doing well,

as were snowdrops, primulas, and bergenias.

We hope a variety of camellias will survive.

The autumn sculpture has sprouted lichen curls to blend with his mottled skin.

Dragons and hellebores are hoping for the best.

Daphne odorata marginata,

wood anemones,

crocuses,

pulmonarias,

and euphorbias all add their splashes of colour which we hope will not be watered down.

For lunch we joined Mum and Elizabeth at Woodpeckers, Colton Care home.

It is my sister’s birthday.

She complimented our mother on

enjoying lasagna which is ‘foreign food’ to someone of her generation. The others also chose lasagna; my choice was cod in parsley sauce. We all enjoyed lemon tart with cream or ice cream.

After the meal Elizabeth drove Mum on a trip into the forest while we

left the birthday present on the Pilley doorstep.

A little later the two ladies arrived at our house to finish the afternoon with tea and Victoria sponge.

Jackie and I dined this evening from bowls of Hordle Chinese Take Away’s delicious fare on trays on our laps while watching recordings of the afternoon’s Six Nations rugby Internationals between Wales and Ireland and between England and Scotland. The second match took place in swirling gales and lashing rain such that neither side deserved to lose. It is a wonder that anyone could play at all. I drank Coonawarra Cabernet Sauvignon 2018.

 

 

On A Hillside

Today was sunny and warmer than yesterday.

Jackie entered the garden for a weeding session. Within seconds Nugget was in attendance, taking time out from his under-gardener role to tweet sweet nothings to Lady, who kept out of sight.

“Where’s Nugget?” (63)

Ron continued sweeping up underneath his front garden feeder.

Jackie also photographed

hellebores,

irises,

and Daphne Odorata Marginata.

Since it was another sunny, somewhat warmer, day, and knowing that Hockey’s would be open today we brunched there to make up for yesterday’s disappointment.

Ponies were back on the moors alongside Holmsley Passage,

and in the Bisterne Close woodland,

where a lowing cow wandered down the lane and vanished into the shadows.

On a bracken covered hillside outside Burley

stood what seemed a somnolent quartet of grey ponies. I fact there was a bay among them, visible only to my camera.

On our return, just north of Ringwood we diverted along an unnamed lane which is in effect a cul-de-sac,

alongside which gnarled knuckles of mossy tree roots caught the sunlight.

A pair horses could be seen at the bottom of a field,

a gate to which bore an Alergy Alert.

This evening we dined on scrambled egg liberally laced with chopped spring onion; fresh salad, and toast.

Where’s Mrs Nugget?

Jackie planted a clutch of primulas this morning.

While she was at it she kept tabs on the winter flowering clematis Cirrhosa Freckles,

and the mahonia that has grown into a tree.

She observed an encounter between a snail and an owl;

and admired the burgeoning Daphne Odorata Marginata and the

Chilean lantern tree.

By far the most exciting discovery, however, was that Nugget had become exceedingly frisky, as was his companion who followed him around.

Yes.

A Mrs Nugget has arrived.

“Where’s Mrs Nugget” in this picture? It is only fair to say that she is not on the feeder, and has her back to us. The Assistant Photographer worked very hard to capture them both in the same shot.

Today I finished reading

Because of the proliferation of pictures in this volume I could do no more that scan them before we set off to The Darbar restaurant in Emsworth where we were to dine with Becky and Ian. I will describe the book and feature the illustrations tomorrow.

We were given a pleasant surprise in that Miche also joined the party and the enjoyable conversation over the meal.

I chose a goat curry the name of which I cannot remember; Jackie’s pick was paneer shashlik. We all shared onion bhajis while Jackie and I shared mushroom rice and a plain paratha. We both drank Cobra, along with Ian and Miche. Becky enjoyed a pomegranate cocktail.. I’m not sure what the others ate.

On our return home we were sent off a closed section of the M27 and diverted into the centre of Portsmouth from which, so confusing were the diversion signs, it took us an hour to escape. The consequence is that it is now 11.15 p.m.