As many countries celebrate Mother’s Day today, my mind is drifting to parental relationships elsewhere in another kingdom.
Two fields behind us are a herd of cows. They are a variety of colours, from black and white, brown and white, grey and white, to all brown, all grey and all white. It would appear that each is a Mother. As their babies lie in the tall grass, Mum stands watch and when the time comes, encourage their young to suckle.
A few miles away, the deer farm pastures are full. It is quite a sight to see hundreds of these beautiful graceful creatures in such close proximity.
On our walk by the river yesterday, ducklings were plentiful. It is a place I took my Mother on several occasions when she visited us in years gone by, and somewhere in her cupboard is a camera and chip with the photographs.
As a teenager, I stayed with a family whose cat had kittens. I was fascinated as I watched them grow.
I worked in a dog kennels for a while shortly after moving here, and at least one of their bitches would be pregnant. Puppies would arrive, be nursed and then sold on, and I found it upsetting that they were seen as just a commodity in a cage, not a member of the family as mine had always been, so I quit.
We are keeping an eye on the swans on their nest in the ditch up on the lane. With recent rains, the water level is rising, and they are forever adding height to protect their eggs. They are taking it in turns to keep the clutch warm, and we hope their efforts will be rewarded.
Here in the UK, we celebrated Mothering Sunday in March.