A Window Frame

Early this morning Jackie photographed

Ellie, perched on tiptoe and reaching for Norrie on the TV screen.

She then applied her lens to her Morning Glory, and, at the end of our trip out, to the display boxes decorating New Milton’s roads.

After lunch, before our drive, she drove me to Sears Barbers for a haircut and photographed the process.

We returned along the coast road where I undertook the photography. Despite the ever stiffening breeze blowing off the Solent, still sporting my shirtsleeves, and having rather less hair covering, I was perfectly warm on the clifftop.

The Isle of Wight, The Needles, and the lighthouse with its red eye, stood out in the gloom,

as did the Hurst lighthouse.

Churning waves sped across the sea to the rocks beneath the crumbling cliff,

cleaving the line of breakwaters.

Walkers along the promenade passed thrift resisting the wind.

The sun occasionally glinted on the sea surface smooth enough for yachting.

On our return home a pony crossed Forest Road.

Beside Holmsley Camp Site ponies shared the landscape with English Longhorn and Belted Galloway cattle and their usual crows;

one foal made a beeline for a feed.

This evening we dined on Jackie’s tasty fusilli Bolognese and Parmesan cheese with which she drank Silvaner Spätlese Rheinhessen 2020, and I drank Selone Cabernet Zinfandel 2021.

Forced Eviction

After buying three large bags of compost at Ferndene Farm Shop Jackie and I took a brief forest drive.

Obscure figures beneath a railway bridge outside Brockenhurst, seeming to create traffic chaos, caused me to disembark and walk

along the heather and bramble lined verge

for a slightly clearer view.

Until I adjusted my vision and lightened the camera’s view the first two shots of this pony and foal’s mutual grooming were reminiscent of the days before single lens reflex equipment helped us cope with parallax and subjects were decapitated or only showed their legs (only those of a certain age will understand this).

For those too young to know this is what could happen in the 1950s.

The pony looked as if it had either wallowed in a mud bath or had been dowsed with the contents of a paint can.

Meanwhile, traffic in both directions, their passengers smiling and aiming their mobiles, carefully negotiated the ponies and each other.

Soon, what I took to be equine reinforcements arrived.

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No. This was a stand-off resulting in a forced eviction.

Flo, Dillon, and Ellie having taken a late lunch to set them on their way to a three day house hunting trip to Scotland did not join us for tonight’s dinner consisting of a repeat of yesterday’s flavoursome Fusilli Bolognese with which Jackie drank more of the French rosé and I drank François Dubessy GSM 2021.

Most Dispirited

The unexpected gales of Anthony, the first ever UK named August storm, wreaked havoc throughout the night.

Jackie has repaired her ceramic owl wind-chimes on countless occasions, but this crashing onto the patio paving, just a day after she had last glued the myriad of pieces together left it beyond further repair, and her most dispirited. The woven ring is Flo’s work.

The rain eased for the morning. By late afternoon we set out on a shopping trip to Tesco, during which an almighty hatful more, despite being repeatedly replenished, was

thrown down on shoppers, trolleys, and cars alike.

Soon sunshine vied for dominance with the rain.

Wet ponies along Forest Road continued with the important work of stocking up on grass

alongside a new stream running down the moorland slope.

On our return along Forest Road ponies ran up the hill while a young woman, having passed both us and them, ran down.

This evening we all dined on Tesco’s spicy burgers; fried onions; sandwich gherkins; and French fries, with which Jackie drank Hoegaarden and I drank more of the GSM.

The Early Ponies Catch The Shade

I headed off the worst of the rising heat with an early dead heading session this morning, before Jackie and I set off for a sultry forest drive.

Beside dappled Holmsley Passage a splendid stand of Foxgloves could be spied through the trees. I wonder whether that ice warning sign will now be redundant.

The driver of ponies and trap on the equally brindled Bisterne Close pulled over for Jackie to drive past.

Marbled banks sloped on either side of Beechwood Lane where rooftop chimneys were discerned among lush undergrowth and a mossy log decayed on the verge.

Shade at the corner of Burley Lawn is at a premium on such a day.

A pair of ponies spooked by passing traffic risked losing their spot when they nipped across Chapel Lane and took their chances on the streaked tarmac.

Another troop, including a foal, heading for shelter were to be disappointed,

and forced to wait in the hope of chances of returns.

Further along stippled Chapel Lane cattle made do with the verge, occasionally spilling over to upset tourist traffic.

In addition to continuing his meticulous clearance of the gravel paths,

Martin this morning loaded his van with the bulk of the garden rubbish and took it away for us. He will do the same next week.

With the help of Wayback Machine I reinserted three missing pictures and added a header to the following post:

This evening we dined on Jackie’s first class beef and onion pie; potatoes sautéed with onions; crunchy carrots and cauliflower; firm Brussels sprouts; tender green beans; horseradish sauce, and meaty gravy, with which the Culinary Queen drank more of the Blume and I finished the Malbec.

Finding Their Feet

We began this morning’s forest drive by delivering loaned oil filled radiators to Elizabeth – we took three; she told us she had only lent us two and now was our own. That came back with us and was deposited in our garden shed at the end of our trip.

We were pleased to find that the post box on Pilley Hill was once more decorated with skilful yarn work.

The usual pair of swans glided along Hatchet Pond,

bringing their seven offspring into the mooring bay, in preparation for

a lesson in walking up a slippery slope. Father led the way with arguably the four fittest; followed by mother with three slower cygnets.

Parents periodically paused to preen,

as did this year’s progeny.

In any group there is always a straggler. So it was with this one.

Leaving Dad at the summit with siblings

Mum stepped back down to offer encouragement to the one who had had enough. We moved off before we learned whether or not she was successful,

looked at the waterlilies,

and continued to Ran’s Wood, where

the stream at the bottom of the slope is now drying up.

The roaring and lowing of cattle disappearing behind shrubbery along its path seemed in protest at the paucity of refreshment. Although I could not see them their sound shattered the sweet birdsong, the drone of an overhead aircraft, and the call of a cuckoo.

I settled for shots of ponies on the opposite hillside.

Along Furzey Lane a seated shaggy donkey and a couple of cows basked in the sunshine. In fact, apart from those on the move above, all the cattle we saw were lying down.

Another donkey still sporting winter wear enjoyed a good scratch at East Boldre until

joined by a friendly foal of the other equine kind.

This evening we all dined on tasty baked gammon; piquant cauliflower and broccoli cheese; boiled new potatoes; and crunchy carrots, with which Jackie finished the Viognier and I drank Trivento Mendoza Malbec 2021.

Comparative Fly-Whisks

Jackie and I took an early forest drive this morning on which

may blossom, like this on Beaulieu Hill, has now followed blackthorn onto the hedgerows.

Opposite this sample we spotted a foal on the verge with a group of ponies.

Ruefully comparing her stubby little tail with her mother’s extensive fly-whisk she clung to the Dam’s flanks, frequently attempted to suckle, scratched with her hoof, and eventually settled seated on the daisy sprinkled sward,

which they kept at manageable length.

A young robin made use of the shadows for camouflage until taking to flight when I approached too near.

Yesterday I had not placed titles correctly on the flower gallery, but did so this afternoon when I also posted

these photographs of sections of the garden, photographed from upstairs windows, at the request of prolific blogger friend Judy Dykstra-Brown.

This evening we all dined on oven cod, chips, and onion rings; fried red tomatoes; green garden peas; pickled onions and gherkins, with which Jackie drank more of the Pinot Grigio and I drank Vineyards Zesty white wine.

“Can We Come And Play”

After a Tesco shop later this afternoon, Jackie and I took a forest drive.

As I photographed a pony by Wootton stream, she moved away from a warning sign about keeping distance and not interfering with the animals.

I turned to photograph a system of roots just as a French gentleman entered the picture. He was very happy to have been included. This led to an opportunity for each us to practice our Franglais, although this became a little too much for his wife and two children, who, nevertheless did join in with some amusement – enough for me to have managed at least one intelligible bilingual pun. My acquaintance wanted to know all about the animals, their ownership, control, etc. In particular, I was able to speak about all aspects of the aforementioned warning sign. Explaining the evident ribs in the animals was interesting. Wolves, wild boar, and badgers were also subjects of interest.

We drove on to Bisterne Close where, while photographing a pony, I met a man who told me of a stallion who had gathered together a harem of 28 mares, where I should find some interesting photographs. I followed his clear directions until I found

the scene of the gathering, which had clearly moved on. Hoofprints had disappeared into a muddy reflecting pool.

I transferred my sights to the woodland, with its fallen trees, its shadows, moss, and catkins writhing on the ground or hanging from the trees.

Some way along the Burley Road towards the A35,

we spied a pony and foal in a distant field.

Further inspection revealed another horse and two small calves. As the bovine parents were at the far end of the field, we assumed their offspring had approached and asked “can we come and play”.

This evening we all dined on pork spare ribs in barbecue sauce and Jackie’s colourful savoury rice, with which she drank Hoegaarden and I drank Campo Viejo Rioja 2021.

The Latest Addition

After a Tesco shopping trip this morning Jackie and I took a drive into the forest.

Someone on Sandy Down has recently installed a new fence snaking up round the bend.

Others enjoy rhododendrons – mature pink blooms high in their garden, and for others newer white ones along the verges which also

harbour plentiful golden dandelions and buttercups and white daisies.

In her comments on yesterday’s post Jooles told me about the new addition to the Pilley village herd, so

we just had to go in search of him. While his mother did her best to ignore his nuzzling attempts at suckling she chomped away trying to put flesh back on over her ribs.

This evening we all dined on burgers, chips, sweetcorn on the cob, pickled onions and gherkins, and baked beans, with which Jackie drank Hoegaarden and I drank more of the excellent Shiraz.

Road Blocks

Early this sultry late summer morning, Jackie and I transported a few items to the Oakhaven Trust Charity shop and emerged with two Thomas Webb crystal wine glasses. When I quipped that we never came back from the Council dump empty handed I received the riposte: “so you are saying we are like the dump?”. We then bought a bottle of Marsannay Louis Latour Burgundy from M & S with a voucher Joseph and Angela had given me for my birthday.

We continued on a forest drive, where ponies were taking up their shade stations as they are wont to do in such weather. As we drove down Forest Road from Burley towards one such location

we noticed a near miss involving the vehicle that preceded the van above. A bay mare, followed by her foal dashed across from the undergrowth on the left side of the picture forcing the driver of a car in the process of passing the equine obstruction to practice his or her emergency stop skills.

The two ponies disappeared among the gorse bushes. I followed what I took to be their track, wandered around in an unsuccessful search,

scanned the empty moorland, and returned to the verge, where

the dam munched grass, and her foal

took a shady spot, before, not having learned a lesson, deciding to join the others

obstructing the traffic – and of course slowing us somewhat.

While seeking the dashing pair I had spoken with a young man walking down the road, telling him what I had seen. He warned that there was another group similarly spread across the road outside his house. He also said that he thought pannage was needed early because these animals were already eating fallen acorns which are poisonous to them. This year the pigs will be let out to snort up the mast on 19th.

As we passed his house we encountered the next road block.

After lunch I undertook an extensive dead heading session. It looks as if we will have many more roses yet.

Later, I added the pictures of Elizabeth and Ellie to https://derrickjknight.com/2022/09/11/elizabeth-meets-ellie/

This evening the four of us dined on succulent roast chicken; sage and onion stuffing; crisp Yorkshire pudding and fried potatoes; firm carrots, cauliflower, and broccoli; and very tasty gravy. Jackie drank Hoegaarden, I finished the Côtes du Rhône, and Flo and Dillon drank fruit cordial.

Selecting Sheltered Spots

Early this morning Jackie continued the clearance in the Rose Garden. I carted her clippings to the compost bins and carried out more dead-heading before we shopped and the Co-op in Stopples Lane then took a drive into the forest.

Well before mid-day shadows flickering in the woodland alongside Bisterne Close manifested as clusters of fly-infested shelter-seeking ponies twitching tails, scratching with frantic hoof and friction against dappled tree trunk clinging together for comfort. Only the ferns risked the direct sun’s rays.

A pair of cyclists who wheeled along the Close were encountered at several points later, and could be

seen on Forest Road beyond a mare and foal, part of a group

disrupting traffic as they sought their own

spots of shelter beneath the spreading branches spanning the road.

Cattle preferred to shelter in the shrubbery.

Elizabeth visited us this afternoon, bringing goodies for Flo, and stayed for dinner which consisted of a selection of Papa John’s pizzas. My sister and I drank Esprit de Puisseguin Saint-Emilion 2019, and Jackie drank Hoegaarden.