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coverts wanted looking after- Several new gorse
coverts ought to be planted in the Friday country,
which was the best part for riding over. And then
there was the wire, which was deplorably prevalent
in places, though well marked with red boards in
the hedges. In the Kennels, too, there was much to
be attended to.

The Packlestone country was hunted four days a
week. Its character was variedócow-pastures and
collieries being the extremes of good and bad. In
some districts there were too many'villages, and there
were three or four biggish industrial towns. This
abundance of population seemed to me an intrusion,
and I wished I could clear every mean modern
dwelling out of the hunt. For the most part, how-
ever, it appeared to be a paradise of jumpable fences,
and compared with the well-wooded Ringwell region
it was a tip-top country. For the first time in my life
I was able to sit down and jump a dozen clean fences
without pulling up. In fact, as Denis said, it was a
place where I could jump myself silly. Also it had
the charm of freshness, and I have always thought
that a country becomes less enjoyable as one gets to
know it better; in a strange country a twisting hunt
seems like a straight one. But this is a truism which
applies to many things in life besides riding to hounds.

Foxes were plentiful, except in parts of the Friday
country; but there was no shortage anywhere as
regards rich-flavoured Surteesian figures. Coming,
as I did, from afar, and knowing nothing of their
antecedents and more intimate aspects, I observed
the Packlestone people with peculiar vividness. I
saw them as a little outdoor world of country char-
acters and I took them all for granted on their
face value. How privileged and unperturbed they