We had a lovely walk earlier this week, down to Batson Creek – a tidal inlet at the top of the estuary just across the water from Salcombe. It was a still and frosty morning and the water was completely flat (although not still, I watched the edge very carefully and could see the tide rising little by little)
So very peaceful now all the visitors have left, no more sound of outboard motors, children squealing and playing and general noise and activity. The summer months are full of life and activity, whilst in contrast, in the winter everywhere is quiet and deserted. This is especially true of Salcombe where a very large proportion of houses in the town are second homes or holiday lets that stand empty through the colder months. But the emptiness is great for the newfies who enjoy being free of my summertime anxiety about their upsetting nervous children and small dogs – sometimes just because they’re big and black!
Batson can be very muddy, there’s a steep path through National Trust woodland down to the creek, with a stream that has to be forded (or in Daisy’s case splash through once, turn around, dive through it a second time and finally run up and down it before leaping out and shaking wet fur – just as I am about to cross!). Dogs are supposed to be under control Miss Daisy!
But this time we didn’t see a single person on our walk so Daisy’s naughtiness didn’t matter. When we reached the creek the tide was coming in ….
So there just had to be swimming! (Them not me)
And afterwards back up the hill again to the car park. Love these seedheads – one day I WILL get around to stitching some!
At last … yesterday after nearly a week in bed I woke up feeling refreshed and restored … my usual self again. So to celebrate I thought I’d take my furry friends, who have been bewildered and distressed by my absence from their lives, down to the beach at Beesands. We haven’t been there for a while as Ben has been poorly too but, unlike me, he brought his difficulties entirely upon himself. He has always loved to collect large smooth round beach pebbles and bring them home with him, but recently he has taken to eating them too – something I wasn’t aware of until he began to experience – how shall I put it – output problems!! An X-ray showed 12 large stones travelling through his digestive system – but luckily for him a large dose of liquid paraffin cleared the blockage – this time at least! So while we were there I watched him like a hawk as Beesands is a mainly shingle beach – and made a little video of our trip too ….
The vet has recommended a basket muzzle to stop his pebble munching but I must admit I’m a bit reluctant to do this – he’d hate it – and I think it would make him look scary to other beach users. But if I can’t stop this habit any other way, then Master Benjamin will indeed be fitted for a muzzle. Watch out Ben – and be GOOD!
Phew! I feel as though my feet haven’t touched the ground for the last few days, there’s been so much going on here in Devon! Rosie’s wedding preparations are gathering pace, and on Friday Jacqui and I set off to test the map she’s drawing to help guests navigate from the church to the reception. It’s only about 7 miles – but through our twisty Devon Lanes, so not as straightforward as you might think. The reception venue is a lovely old barn set in the countryside at South Milton, overlooking the sea below ….
With simply wonderful views and we’re hoping the weather will be kind to us on the day! After we’d checked the accuracy of her map, Jacqui and I decided to take the dogs down to the beach below – South Milton Sands which is owned and managed by the National Trust. It’s a beautiful spot…
Of course the newfies took to the waves, but without their friend. Young Lionel is not a swimmer and remained further up the beach rootling around in some (very) smelly seaweed …
Here’s Daisy pretending to be a speedboat, whilst Ben prefers a more sedate approach …
The water was so clear. Afterwards we all adjourned to the little cafe at the top of the beach for a nice warming cuppa (it was chillier than it looks in the photos!)
Then home, for a bit of baking in preparation for Rosie & Dan’s arrival. I made one of their favourites ….
Millionaire’s shortbread. I wonder how many calories there are in this tray?!?! It’s probably best not to think about it!
Then, after a busy Saturday spent showing Dan’s parents around the area (they live in the north of England and don’t know Devon at all), on Sunday we all headed off to a huge wedding fair in Exeter. Rosie and Dan wanted to book a photobooth for the reception – a whole new concept for us oldies – so we simply had to try it out …….
The rain clouds have all blown away and today was a wonderfully warm, mellow autumnal day. The newfies love this time of year – all their summer lethargy disappears – and they eagerly anticipate their daily outings. Today we visited Snapes Point, always a favourite ….
We don’t actually live very far from Snapes Point as the crow flies, but because the estuary meanders between the hills, disappearing into innumerable little creeks and inlets, it takes us about half an hour to reach the car park. Then Ben’s first through the gate ….
The field where we went blackberrying last month has all been ploughed now, and there are far fewer boats in the creek than we saw just a few weeks ago…..
A very autumnal feeling – lots of little mushrooms scattered across the fields …..
I’m not very good at identifying fungi, so when we got home I consulted my books ….
Rather old – positively vintage in fact – but I’m sure that fungi won’t have changed that much! I didn’t find my little mushrooms though since, as usual, I became distracted by the illustrations, so much work – such detail and lovely colours. I much prefer botanical illustrations to photographs …
Wonderful! But I am good at identifying different hips, haws and berries in the hedgerows and was delighted to discover an abundance of beautiful scarlet rose hips. I gathered nearly 2 lbs, and intend to try making my Auntie Joyce’s rose hip jelly tomorrow ….
But tonight we all have tired legs, feet and paws – so it’s an evening in front of the TV for us. Should we choose Strictly Come Dancing (my preference) or another rerun of The Wonder of Dogs (as preferred by Daisy?!)?
Sorry Daisy – I’m in charge of the remote – so it’s Strictly tonight I’m afraid!!