For yesterday evening's dogwalk we drove down the valley, parked up, then ambled along the forest path which runs parallel to the stream. Our side of the valley was in shade while t'other side had the sun. Looking out across the valley stream I suddenly noticed that the small pine forest that lined one side of the narrow downhill track from the hamlet had been felled. Stripped tree-trunks glowed orange in the evening sun, littering the open hillside where there was once a dark green blanket of trees. Very soon they'll be stacked, loaded onto lorries, then driven off to one of the local woodyards where they'll await their final destination. Then the cycle begins again with the planting of saplings about a foot high, all set out in rows. The landscape round these parts is constantly changing. Used to bother me at first but now it doesn't. The forests are in safe and expert hands.

Crossed the stream at the little bridge (where Jock had a paddle and quick drink) then headed up the path for a closer look at the felled trees. Couldn't get far though due to trunks blocking our way. Wee Jockie couldn't get through but Sprocket just jumped from log to log like a mountain goat. Never known a dog like him for agility. And all the while we enjoyed the wonderful aroma of freshly cut pine.

Curiosity satisfied, we then turned around and headed back. Then, as usual, just when we were approaching the end of the walk, Sprocket detoured left into the field where he chases rats in the banks of the stream. Forget the rodents, it's a really tranquil spot with a lovely view along the valley. At the edge of the stream the ground was smothered in blue flowers. Don't know what they are but they're definitely not bluebells (having said that, they're probably part of the same family - hah, what do I know!). Pottered around there for a few minutes, enjoying the peace and quiet of a warm, spring evening while Jockie had another well-earned drink from the stream (short legs, long walk - gets tiring for the old fella) with Sprocket nowhere to be seen. Minutes later he appeared out of nowhere and we headed back to the dogwagon and drove home. Then the dogs got stuck into a Friday night treat of chicken and rice while I had the same but done as a curry. Marvellous.

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