One sunny June day the class of twenty eight boys and girls were making their way around the garden armed with their paper and pencils looking for flowers and trees and hidden nests. They trekked across the lower field, the fittest ones running ahead like cattle that had just been let out to grass after a long winter in the barn, shouting the answers gleefully. The next group, puffing to keep up, only stopping to write with difficulty by resting their paper on a chum's back - and the remainder walking slowly, very slowly - looking at the grass and sky, in a world of their own. And as they neared the picnic table on the lawn in front of the house, set out with jugs of orange juice and cakes and biscuits, they shrieked with delight and pointed and called to their friends to run faster. Not the jammy dodgers nor iced gems had caused such elation, but Lily, Sophie and Sally - three yearling Hereford heifers that were gathered around the table eating the aforementioned delicacies. Mum and Dad shooed them back into the paddock, much to their disappointment, but not before photos had been taken and that year's trip held a special place on the activities board in the school.
Duff Hart-Davis, the journalist and author, once wrote about sending visiting children on an egg-hunt:
'There is no better way of entertaining - that is to say, getting rid of - visiting children than to send them on an egg-hunt; the discovery of clean, brown eggs nestling in a scoop of hay or straw is immensely satisfying to almost everyone. Yet hens display astonishing ingenuity in concealing their clutches; some do not give themselves away by cackling, and at least once a year we are amazed by the emergence of a mother and family from a nest whose existence we never suspected.
On one occasion, I despatched a pack of small visitors to the farmyard with instructions to collect all the eggs they could find, promising 10p for every one over a dozen. I thought I knew my nests and settled down with the rest of the parents for a peaceful drink. Back came the children with fifty eggs. Some of them were old enough to have gladdened the heart of a Chinese chef; but since I had been foolish enough not to specify fresh eggs, I felt morally bound to pay.'