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I took Rose for a jaunt to the New Forest, wrestling with two OS maps for a simple route. Approching Nomansland, the tunnel of vibrant foliage and ferns I passed through, rhodedendrons dropping flowers
generously over the wet road, bright stripes of sunlight sparkling through the trees, unexpectedly reminded me of Hawai'i. At Nomansland, I paused on the sunny green to look at the well of rememberance and eat a banana, before cycling on through an especially lovely piece of fresh-after-rain woodland. Out on Telegraph Hill, I flew across open moorland overhung with a threatening grey sky and sang a gloriously out-of-tune rendition of Wuthering Heights, which changed to the obvious Queen song through the village of Bohemia.

Running through the pea field, morning sun turning the raindrops on the oilseed to billions of sparkling crystals, I spread my arms wide to brush the leaves and feel the water trickling down my arms.

Crouching amid the big wet strawberry leaves, rummaging for the ripe ones, I snip away steadily. I can smell fresh wet greenery and crushed mint, the peaceful sounds of church bells and wood pidgeons float
across the damp evening air. I eat sweet, tangy rapsberries straight off the canes.


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February 2017

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