Monday, 18 April 2011

Loddington, Llamas & Louts

Sunday was another beautiful day, the middle of a great little spell of spring weather. As we had other commitments for part of the weekend, we decided to stay local for our walk – with only a morning to spare we decided on the easy walk to neighbouring Loddington and back, a round trip of about 9.5 miles, which also gave us chance to note the details ready for writing up in the local newsletter.

We started out along the lane, the sunshine dissipating the early morning cool. Signs of spring are all around now. We saw Orange Tip and Brimstone butterflies, watched a Song Thrush singing in a tree and spotted Bluebells flowering in the woods. In the fields, yellow rape was coming into bloom.

Loddington is an attractive village, the centre based around a cluster of large, stone-built houses and the imposing church. We ate our lunch early, sitting on a handily placed bench, before starting the return leg.

One of the pleasures of this walk is seeing the llamas. Just outside Loddington is a field where four of these unusual creatures can often be seen. They are inquisitive, friendly things and will often come and meet whoever is walking by. A sign nearby informed us that there had been some recent unsavoury incidents – rocks and wood thrown at the llamas, with beer cans and other detritus strewn around – and asked residents to keep an eye out for any clues as to the perpetrators. Who would want to do such a thing? It beggars belief that anyone would deliberately set out to hurt these curious animals.

Heading back, we passed through two fields of young cattle and two of sheep and lambs before rejoining the lane for the final stretch into the village. It was nice to get a few miles under our boots (the training is good for us – there is much to come in the next few weeks) a nice little walk for a beautiful spring morning, unfortunately slightly marred by the depths that some people are prepared to sink to.

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