Monty: coincidence or divine intervention?

Well, blow my biscuits! Some of you may recall a piece I wrote recently about my gorgeous grand-daughter, Harriet (whom we call ‘Harrie’) and her first donkey ride on Scarborough’s North Bay beach.

Harrie on Monty and Toby walking beside
Harrie on Monty and Toby walking beside

She was so excited, hopping from foot to foot when she realised her dream was actually going to happen, right there, right then. She made a bee-line for the gorgeous old chap, Monty, having clearly fallen in love at first sight.

I waxed lyrical at the time about how cheering it was to see such a bond, such joy at such a simple, albeit extremely brief, encounter with an animal that she clearly has a great affinity for. We all smiled, because on one of our few visits home from Hong Kong when Toby was very small (about eighteen months old) we had exactly the same reaction from him then. He had been greatly looking forward to the experience, had asked lots of questions and clearly loved the experience once he had achieved his ambition.

Imagine then how I felt upon rediscovering a photograph of the event, some fifteen years ago now, with my little chap sat upon a donkey, this time on Scarborough’s South beach.

‘Oh, how gorgeous were you then, cherub!’ I cooed at the almost six feet of teenage man-child that he now is. I can do that, because I have the privilege of being his mother and can say these things without fear of retribution, as long as there’s only us around.

Toby on Monty, in 1998
Toby on Monty, in 1998

Even he had to admit that he was cute. His big sister walked with him along the sands that day, whilst I took photos and enjoyed the scene.

Now look closely at the donkey. YES! It is the same animal! How marvellous that Monty still enjoys his work with children on his favourite beaches.

I’m not sure if I believe in coincidence or whether there is some divine  intervention going on here, but it certainly made my day to find this!


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