Towards the end of the time in England with the kids, they were nagging that it was sunny out and dinner wasn’t for an hour or so and can they have an adventure.
So, we hopped into the car and I took them to Knole Park – a Medieval deer park that survives pretty much intact – to see if we could see some deer.
There are usually hundreds of them about – even though its a pretty big place (1000 acres, 4 sq km) you can pretty much rock up at one of the entrances and there’ll be loads of them right there. They might be wild, but they’re not stupid – people bring food.
Here’s some photos I’ve taken before
Anyway, we arrived, parked up and walked a short way to where I have always known the deer to hang out.
No deer to be seen.
Now, thats fine if you’re me – its a beautiful park – if we don’t have deer, its no big deal.
Not so if you’re 3.
When you’re a 3 year old small boy, its the end of the world. Henry had decided that as there were no deer, he had a headache in his legs, he was hungry, it was cold and he had a sore throat. All at once.
Ella, however, being 8, although disapointed, is more flexible and wanted an adventure anyway.
So, she set off down an impossibly steep hill through the head-height (for me) bracken in order to find her some deer. Henry was busy laying face down bawling at this point, so I scooped him up on to my shoulders (with no regard for my now popping spine) and followed her.
Ella had no trouble following what turned out not to be a path as such, but was really a deer track into the ever thickening forest of bracken, trouble is, she had no idea where it was going nor was thinking about me, carring a bag, camera and a Henry down a 45 degree slope.
Anyway, we got to the bottom unscathed and had fun along the way, even though we didn’t see any deer. Henry recovered his dignity and decided that life was maybe worth living after all and was running about happily after his big sister.
On the way home, there are a couple of other spots where wild deer and such hang out, so I took them back via the scenic route and had a couple of pit-stops and into some fields to see if we could see any where I know they sometimes hang out.
Again, a pic from a few years ago from this spot (see, children, you do believe me, don’t you?)
This time. however, no deer.
The buggers have all gone on holiday!
Ah well, the kids started to find it funny that Daddy was totally hopeless at locating deer and also learned that wild animals can’t be relied upon for fun.