Erdiston to Milson

Monday 12 July 2021

Second Half of blog - first half to follow!

We decided to box the boys along the busy main road. The back way had too many steep hills for the boys on their first day out. We boxed them to the lovely green in the middle of Milson. So we spent the morning cleaning the caravan and hoovering the floor. We then had a coffee with Mary and Jim. Soon Juliet and Jackie arrived and Peter, Oscar, Juliet and Jackie drove to the Green at Milson where Peter and Oscar unloaded the carriage and left Juliet and Jackie with it to make sure no one took a fancy to it. They then came back to Jim and Mary's and we loaded the donkeys and drove back to Milson. Juliet and Jackie had organised a delicious salad picnic and they managed to commandeer two chairs on the green and so we all had somewhere to sit. Jackie was a magistrate and family court judge with Juliet, that is how they know each other. Having had our picnic, we harnessed up the donkeys and they were really set to go. Having had four days enforced rest they couldn't wait to get going again. We went down the main road for about half a mile and then turned round and came back to the Green – we then drove down a narrow lane for nearly a mile and after a few minutes realised that Juliet was following with Peter beside her. I suddenly thought 'I wonder if Jackie would like a ride?' so Carolle got down and ran back and Jackie came and sat on the back. She loved it. As we approached the Green there was suddenly Hilary Powell. It is amazing to see friends from home when we are so far away. Hilary was staying with an old school friend also called Juliet. They stood around and chatted for about 20 minutes. We then felt that we should move on. Various people stopped us and gave us donations. It is wonderful to have so much interest.

When we got to Clod Hall we drove the donkeys in and peter helped by Oscar reversed the trailer in by the stables. We unharnessed the boys and got them into the stable. We fed them and checked the girth sore which seemed to be holding out. We kept putting surgical spirit on and vaseline which all helped. Another amazing thing happened. Our next stop at Knowbury was proving a bit of a problem. It is OK for Oscar to camp by the stable but there are no toilet facilities on site. Lin Marriott-Lodge was very helpful and said she would bring down an old portaloo. This is not ideal – however if 'needs must'. Yesterday on facebook I saw a message from Elizabeth Hatchell. “I see that you are coming to Knowbury. I live in Knowbury so if I can help in any way then let me know” Of course, I then rang her and told her the situation – she has offered Oscar shower facilities and breakfast which is a Godsend. We pass her door as we approach Knowbury and an old lady nearby used to keep donkeys and is keen to see them. Elizabeth said that if we ring her when we cross the B road she will go and fetch her to come and see us as we pass just in front of her house. The kindness of so many people is so overwhelming and I feel it is impossible to say thank you in any adequate way

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