A Year 1 (5 years old) boy's family found out that I wouldn't be on site for the last day of term and his father visited me at lunchtime with a handmade card and box of chocolates that his son had created - apparently without prompting! Isn't that sweet?
I have a few strategies for coping with the heat from our time in Adelaide and Sydney - but it is definitely a bit of a shock to encounter 38 degrees in the Cotswolds!? As it is, I found myself lying on the sun-lounger in the garden at 5.00am this morning having woken up with the dawn chorus (blasted birds!) and finding the bedroom (in the eaves) a tad toasty! However, lounging in the garden was quite refreshing - dozing as the day woke itself up, with a soft breeze and accompanied by chirruping chiff-chaffs, blackbirds and song-thrushes. Nice.
Then, it was rude awakening into reality as I hauled myself into school at 8am... but thankfully it is the end of term tomorrow! More of that another time - maybe - unless I erase it from my consciousness and conveniently forget about it? Probably preferable for all involved.
We have tried to sell / give-away the concert tickets but – at the time of writing – they are still available. We have two nights in a hotel booked and paid for and train travel booked and paid for, as well. However, due in some part to my trepidation about tooth pain and so on, but more seriously considering major complications and stresses in my friend’s family’s current situation, and the re-emergence of covid infections ramping up, we thought it was sensible to stay at home.
This was a pretty difficult decision as we have been hard-core Duranies since attending our first “pop concert” in 1983 at the age of 14 years! We have seen them on numerous occasions but it’s always good to add another to the list. Oh well.
So, I’m consoling and distracting myself by planning not very much for the following sunny days of predicted temperatures of 26 and more degrees! Hmm… Where are my sun-glasses? Where’s the sun-screen? Where’s my book?
It was good to put some faces to names too. Obviously, I have had fairly regular contact with individuals linked to Winchcombe Open Gardens and Friends of St Peter’s but have only met a handful of people – because of Covid rules and the fact that many are older and therefore shielded more than most.
However, a few things made me laugh! Whilst chatting to my Zip Wire colleague and making small-talk I mentioned that as children [and teenagers] me, Kate and Ali were the bellringers at our local village church, as well as being stalwart members of the choir. The choir comprised a raggedy bunch of kids, but we did our best! My sisters and I rang the bells for at least six years – but it was just a peel of three bells- and even then it might sound very temperamental and just a cacophony of clanging! Anyway, literally less than fifteen minutes after mentioning this background information, another woman turned up at the table to see if I would like to join the bell-ringing team?*! I don’t know about Zip-wires but the speed at which this news spread was phenomenal! Needless to say, I have not committed myself to this venture but have said that I will go to a Wednesday rehearsal one evening to see what and who is involved.
Another thing that made me smile was the enthusiasm of the kids to have their stuffed toys lurch into space from the height of 90ft, from the top of the church tower. One small child surprised his mother when buying a ticket for the event suddenly produced three toys from his rucksack! Needless to say, Mum paid one pound for one bear, but the small boy had to use two pounds of his saved pocket-money for the others – which he was very happy to do! Bless.
I also had interesting conversations with a whole range of people – volunteers and visitors alike. The majority of people were local but there was a smattering of tourists too – from Italy, Portugal and America.
Of course, it all happens at a Cotswolds Church Fete… I found myself deep in conversation with a chap who was (or used to be) the sound engineer for The Who / Pete Townsend, and amongst other things, an award-winning photographer for books /images associated with The Lost Gardens Of Heligan (by Tim Smit). A tenuous gardening link for this Liability-Brown Blog!
It was interesting...different…unusual!
** BTW - "Endless Wire" is a song by The Who (although I don't know it - I just Googled their song list).