A Forest mare and foal. The collar she is wearing is a reflective one so she will show up if she is crossing the road after dark.
I've not finished writing about my holiday yet, though it seems just a memory now. My forum friend "Yarrow", who has just been to stay with me here, also drove down to meet up when we were in the Forest. She brought her two children with her, and as they had never been to the Forest before, I knew they were in for a special day. First off, we had a lovely wander around Burley and all its "witchy" shops. There were donkeys in the car park, and ponies which were happy to be petted as well.
Then we drove across the Forest to Lyndhurst, the "capital" of the Forest. We used to catch an early bus to go riding here (from the pub below) and get off at Ashurst and walk across the Forest, which was magical so early in the day. There was a beautiful windy stream which we called Snake River . . .
This is a pub in Lyndhurst which in the 1960s had a riding stables running from it. The ponies were kept in the old stabling at the back of the pub, and we mounted up in the old stable yard and then - stopping the traffic - rode out down the High Street in Lyndhurst to reach Bolton's Bench and an hourly ride that side of the town, or else we would take the road straight across from the stables and ride around the edge of the Golf Course and into the Enclosures. The memories are still crystal clear to me. In the churchyard near Bolton's Bench is buried the lady who, as a child, was the model for Lewis Carrol's Alice in Wonderland.
Had we gone straight across, we would have passed this shop, which has a wonderful window display and now sells beautiful scented gifts.
Memories of bygone days.
Then we stopped on the way back to Burley and had a walk. It made a change to explore a totally different part of the Forest.
This shallow lake turns out to be a boating lake, but only dog-walkers were about when we passed it.
A very bad picture of me (on the left) and Yarrow, who has a wonderful blog here. We get on so well - it is as if we have known each other from a previous life. I am so grateful to the Internet, forums and blogging, as I have made lifelong friends. Even the lovely Ann of the Forest, who we house-sat for, is a forum buddy of mine!
I will try and write about the Downton Lace tomorrow, but in the meantime, a piece of yesterday's home-made ratatouille-topped pizza beckons . . .