Harry’s lead walks didn’t heal his lameness and in early December x-rays, CT scans and eventually a camera into his shoulder reveal that he has torn a ligament in his shoulder. December has been a dark month for him with no walking, absolute calm and complete rest. None of which are in Harry’s vocabulary. After a gradual introduction of 10 minute walks around home, the beginning of January sees an increase of 5 minutes to his walks every two weeks and finally, the physiotherapist saying that walking out on the Forest, on the lead of course, will actually help. So we now have 15 minutes on the lead to enjoy our lovely surroundings with the hope of 20 minutes in two weeks time.
We celebrate with a tiny walk at Linford Bottom in the morning and enjoying a beautiful sunset from Vereley Hill in the evening.
After a lot of rainy days, we finally have a fine and frosty morning. Looking up Linford Brook with the shadow of the road bridge railings in the foreground.
Behind me, all is frosty looking towards Linford Green.
Have branch, will build rope swing. There are many places in the Forest where these things can be found, quite often over water. It isn’t often you find two on one branch.
The low winter sun has not reached paths just below Little Linford Inclosure and they are still covered in frost…
…the path 20 yards to the left is in the sun and green.
The bracken is frosty making pretty patterns, if a touch out of focus. NFW is out of practice!
As we get to the outer point of our walk, all 7.5 minutes, the interestingly shaped branches of a blackthorn bush frame the bits of the Forest that are forbidden to us at the moment.
A glance into Little Linford Inclosure and the young, bare, beech trees.
A glance out of the window just prior to our afternoon outing shows that we have an unusual visitor to our garden. A Greater Spotted Woodpecker.
When our pretty visitor has left, the sun begins to sink behind our majestic Zebra Grass (Miscanthus Sinesis).
It’s been a rarely clear day with little cloud in the sky and the sun sets with just a few clouds to heighten the view. The strangely shaped structure to the right of the sun is the water tower at Poole.
The huge orb of the sun sinks lower. I learnt from Stephen Fry’s QI two days ago that when we see the sun like this, it is physically already below the horizon, but because of the way light bends and refracts through the atmosphere, it still appears to us.
Sinking even lower, rays are sent up into a gloriously coloured sky.
Then it’s gone.
When I was little and so in love with the Lake District that we visited every summer, I used to look at clouds like this and imagine that they were actually mountains in the mist. You have to look carefully to see them!
The path skirting the base of Castle Hill leads through a patchwork of purples and browns in the dying light.
And the view into Dorset is a study in contrasting lines. So happy to be back out in the Forest.