Work. Holiday. Work. Training courses. A couple of music festivals. More work. I've been too busy to write.
But I am still here, and riding. Yesterday afternoon we slipped out into the quiet fields. The track up this silent valley has been mown, unlike the remaining grass which is left as cover for game birds. The ground is hard as rock, so it was a slow ride. Mostly. Brena was keen on the way back, and a couple of firm canters did take place.
Holiday was spent in Sardinia, on the flatter northwest of the country. The eastern parts are mountainous, and I visited these a couple of years ago. The parched land is best suited to hardy sheep. Walking in the low hills, the tinkling bells of flocks seldom seemed far away. It was a hot experience, walking, and I was glad for sunblock and a couple of pints of water.
A thousand year-old church provided welcome shade for a mid-walk rest. How odd to sit on a tumbled fragment of rock behind this ancient building, cool in a fresh breeze, looking across the valley. What did the ancient inscription on my makeshift seat mean? Part of an old gravestone, perhaps? Somewhere below, sheep grazed. The thin figure of a shepherd strode across the field, paying me no attention. Long ago many more people must have lived here in order to justify a solidly-built church.
The sea was lovely, clear and a perfect temperature for swimming. One pleasant day we took a boat trip. After cruising by the cliffs of impressive fractured limestone, the vessel was anchored in a sheltered bay. It was time to immerse oneself. This was the first time that I've swum in relatively deep water, an odd experience as one must keep swimming rather than put one's feet down and stop like in a pool, but very enjoyable.