As Steve has had the audacity to have another international work trip (this time to Singapore), I felt it only fair that I have fun in which he could not share! Slightly malevolent of me, I am aware, considering that he will be having a miserably humid time having to speak to students while suffering jet lag. But that is his own cross to bear. Mine was to head down the M5 to Somerset and visit the lovely Lynne (Doctor of bees!) in Chew Magna.
Lynne’s poor husband was shipped off even further south to allow us to have a really good catch up. We lived together (along with Steve) at University but since, an awful amount of life has got in the way and although we do make occasions for the four of us to get together, this was the first girl-only opportunity we have had in years. So DVDs were packed, wine and cider fridged, snacks and cookies and crisps all prepared, and home made pizza built. However, wittering was definitely the order of the night, leading to only a slight dent (nay, a mere nick) being made in the slob out supplies in stock. Only one DVD was attempted, but we didn’t pay a single moment’s attention to it. Such a therapeutic night – absolutely wonderful. Even though we love our respective boys, it is so worth while, just once every so often, casting them aside for a decent natter and munch.
If that was not good enough, the dark moodiness of Saturday clouds were replaced with bright sparkling sunshine on Sunday. So warm that my face now is a little on the lobster side (despite, I might add, sun cream!). I was like a new sprung shoot, turning my head this way and that to soak up the beautiful spring time light – fighting off the last of the lingering winter blues. Bacon butties eaten in the garden (a rare treat – especially as it has a habit of raining when ever Lynne and Pete are visited!) we set off on a little womble, taking Scrumpy the Jack Russel over to the cliffs at Cheddar Gorge. Nothing too strenuous for a Sunday you will understand, but good for the heart and mind – particularly as I learnt a little more about wild flowers, birds and bugs; I had no idea orchids grew wild in this country!
The views over the West Country were a little hazy, but it did not matter, there were just enough glimmers and glitterings in the sunshine to make me feel on top of the world, looking down on all the little creatures scurrying hither and thither down below. Such a perfect afternoon, including a quick nip into the gorge itself for hand made fudge and a pub-pit-stop.
I adore visiting Lynne, Pete and Scrumpy. Not just because they are good friends who we have fun with, but also because I always feel like I am on my holidays, not matter how fleeting the visit. The whole place is utterly idyllic and a pace of life I could happily get used to. Obviously, there are living aspects we do not see on mere visits, but there is so much beauty, interest and history (as in real, old history of legends and mystery) that I feel almost intoxicated with the scent of it all, every time I enter the West Country. I love it. I am so thankful that we have a ready excuse to visit it as often as we can. And Lynne and Pete too, obviously!