Today is a beautiful day for a ride, not a cloud in the sky and it is warm, unusual for March, so I pull my jodhpurs on and drive down to the stables.
I chat to Lucy in the feed room, collect Ant from the field, give him a quick flick over with a brush, pick out his feet and tack him up.
Off we go to the park. Ant walks normally to the end of the road then power walks the rest of the way. I could have a hot seat as Jeanette reckons Ant is slow. There is nothing slow about Ant. I think I maybe need to avoid riding out with her as we clearly have different concepts of speed, either that or she has seen a side of Ant I am yet to witness.
So we power walk up the hill, towards the beautiful Georgian hall, which must have fantastic views over the surrounding countryside and take the track towards the fields of pigs.
Where I notice a man up a tree, a very tall tree, holding a chain saw and yelling at a man at the foot of the tree. And I see a sign next to them that says ‘treecutting’. My heart sinks and I wonder how Ant will be with treecutting as it is now too late to turn back. I shout ‘hello’ to the treecutters to make them think twice about treecutting until we have gone past.
They are friendly and don’t do any treecutting.
We carry on and I think, lovely, we can enjoy this now and then I notice another yellow hat in a tree and one at the bottom of the trunk, just a bit further round.
And another couple of yellow hats two hundred yard on and more and more and more all along the woods. In fact, in total there must be about fifteen lots of treecutters attacking different trees throughout the park.
Brrrrrrrrrrr, brrrrrrrrrrrrrr, brooooooooooooom, brrrrrrrrrrrr. The tranquility of the sunny afternoon is shattered by the song of chainsaws.
And I begin to wonder what star I was born under.