Clearance of the future rose garden continues apace. Yesterday Jackie uprooted several unproductive fruit bushes, and this morning I removed the last of the box hedges and a photinia that had been well rooted for a few years. This latter plant required the use of a grubber axe. It had to come out because it has the potential to grow into a huge tree. There is one in the jungle garden next door which is so high that we get the benefit of it.
After this, I took my now customary route on foot to Milford on Sea, taking a diversion through a nature reserve on the way back. Having passed through Shorefield, I met Mike, the postman, who confirmed that he was indeed more comfortable in the front garden next door, photographed yesterday. He was also very helpful about the problem I have been having with misdirected mail being delivered to The Old House, Lymington Road. This is yet another difficulty with MyBarclays, who hold my French bank account. They will only accept proof of address from my New Forest Council Tax bill. This gives our address as Lymington Road, rather than Christchurch Road. I am engaged in a frustrating exchange of e-mails with the bank. Until this is resolved, Mike suggested I might explain the problem to the residents of The Old House, which is not on his round, so they may readdress my statements.
The Solent is now calm enough for leisure yachting. People were walking babies in buggies, and sometimes frisky dogs on foot. From the cliff top Tony pointed out the Isle of Wight to his wife Anne. We conversed about my photograph and the general state of the cliffs. I have mentioned before, the superb view The Beach House has of the island and its lighthouse. Today I shot it through their mature conifers.
On the way back out of Milford on Sea there is a footpath on the right. I have speculated about where it might lead, but had not had the confidence to try it before. Today, however, I noticed Trevor enjoying a cigarette as he basked on a bench in the sunshine. Crossing a footbridge over a stream, I asked him where the path led. He directed me along it, telling me how I could pick up the coast road. As I walked back over the bridge, an attractive woman came into view. This was Jan, who looks after the administration of the Community Centre cafe. She is a blues fan and particularly likes The Blues Band, especially Paul Jones and Tom McGuiness. This discovery enlivened our conversation somewhat.
Crossing a road along the footpath I entered the Nature Reserve through which it ran, leaving it on a slope up to Woodland Way on the left. This led to Delaware Road, and thence the cliff top. The path, beside which cyclamen blooms among dandelions, does extend further, and one day I may explore it more.
Tonight we dined at our old haunt, The Family House Chinese restaurant in Totton. We ate our favourite set meal, and both drank T’Sing Tao beer. Like many Asian restaurants they juggle, very successfully, with serving diners and taking down takeaway orders.