Friday, 20 September 2013
A magnificent stand of beech trees marked the limit of the wood with the western ridge beyond. Crunching beech mast underfoot, she trudged on up, trailing a golden-brown wake through the fallen leaves towards the ridge. A constant stream trickled silently now from the Down, over mossy stones. Ferns grew here in the dripping hollows. As she came to the edge of the wood, a rabbit, sitting on a stump, was daintily washing itself. One of last spring's youngsters, its liquid black eyes blinked in the sunshine, parchment-thin ears twitching information from its surroundings.