Today I accompanied my mother on a visit to the local country show, “The Ellingham and Ringwood Agricultural Society Annual Show”. In simple terms it’s a farm show with livestock, animal parades, tractors, vegetable competitions and a whole load of stalls, all in the grounds of the local Lord’s house.
When we were arrived we came pretty much straight across the donkeys. My mum is obsessed with donkeys and has had the life dream of owning one so we spent a little while having a look of them, with lots of “aw”s coming from my mums direction. A short while later we saw some Shetland pony racing which is always pretty comical. Next we went over to the animal’s section and saw sheep, pigs (with cute lil piglets), cows and even some alpacas. Dad and I have decided we are going to buy an alpaca when (or rather if) we become millionaires.
We then spent a fair bit of time wandering around the various stalls, after pretty much ignoring the tractor section. Tractors are boring. There were a lot of country clothes stalls (if I wanted a leather hat this would be the place) and craft stalls. There was also a whole marquee with food stalls in it. We bought, from various different stalls, some cakes,some fudge, a jar of jam and some cheese.
Ah, yes, cheese. Actually I was disappointed at the rarity of cheese stalls but of course I visited one and bought a whole load of cheese including Danish blue and Peri-Peri Cheddar. Danish blue (picture below) is Denmark’s entry into the blue cheese world and is incidentally one of my faves. Cheddar is of course a classic English cheese but filled with mixed with spicy peri-peri sauce (they use that in the restaurant Nando’s) makes it a lot more interesting. Spicy cheese is good.
Also blue cheese apparently contains penicillin and the large amounts of blue cheese I’ve eaten recently could be the reason I am the only one in the family to not have had a nasty Summer cold.
Anyway, back to the show. We visited the competition marquee where vegetables and cakes get judged. The cakes looked delicious and I would have happily dug into a fair few of them. We actually thought that we could compete in some classes of the vegetable competition with items from our allotment though we wouldn’t win with the carrots as sat on the table were the longest carrots I have ever seen in my life.
Lunch consisted of a bacon roll from one of the meat stands and a chocolate sauce pancake, which I struggled to eat with only a plastic fork. Plastic cutlery is so rubbish, a cocktail stick would probably be a better tool! Whilst eating we headed to the dog show where they have a little obstacle course a bit like Crufts and visitors are invited to get their dog to go round it. Most of the attempts we saw were with tiny dogs which made it all the more amusing. None of them looked like they had a clue what was going on but were happy to follow their owner for treats.
I then went into a tent with reptiles in. Mum stayed outside due to her fear of snakes,which was just as well as there were several large boa constrictors in there. Amongst other things there was a large green iguana called Dave. I was disappointed at their lack of imagination when it came to that name.
Eventually we decided we had seen everything and negotiated our way out of the car park. I spent a fair bit of the afternoon and evening watching sport. I can’t believe I am saying that considering I pretty much refused to watch any sport up until a few months ago. First was football where my team Bournemouth won 5-1, which was excellent. Then tennis, in which British player Andy Murray beat world number one Rafa Nadal and then the twenty-twenty version of cricket where my county, Hampshire, won the cup in the closest final I have ever seen in anything.
So there we go, a rather odd but enjoyable day. Hopefully soon I will have collected a fortieth follower and then I will feel proud of this blog. Remember, I love your comments and I reply most of the time so feel free to share your thoughts, say nice things to me or just say hi. See you tomorrow!