Sunday, April 14, 2019

Out and About: Bryant's Bottom

After a couple of relatively miserable weeks (I spoke about that here) I have managed to find my groove again.  Today was a vivid reminder of how lovely life can be if I take the time to enjoy and appreciate what's going on around me.  

This morning Grant and I decided to take a walk in an area we'd never been to before.  We recently bought a book called "Pub Walks in the Chilterns" and it has some lovely walks in it, all circular walks that start at a pub.  The walk we decided to do today was in Bryant's Bottom.  It's a really short drive from where we live to Bryant's Bottom so we left home at 11:00, drove to the pub, parked our car and then set off on foot for a 5km walk that ended back at the pub just in time for lunch.

The walk was absolutely lovely.  Food for the soul!  

Now bear in mind, Paula's brother-in-law is called Bryant... so I have to admit that the humour on this walk was childish in the extreme.... "It was a tough slog out of Bryant's bottom", "It's a slippery slope into Bryant's Bottom" (It actually was!)  Yeah, I'm ashamed to admit we can be THAT childish...sorry Bryant! 😊  Moving on...

The walk was lovely.  A steep climb right at the start and then gentle strolling, apart from the rather slippery slope down the hill again.  We walked on public footpaths that led us onto farm land, through paddocks and into the woods.  So beautiful!

My day was made right here when this herd of cows took a liking to me and followed me right across the field!

A special touch was this little cart we came across selling marmalade etc and baked goods.  The cheese straws were lovely and toast and marmalade is on the cards for supper tonight!

Our lovely morning ended with a really good roast lunch at The Gate pub in Bryant's Bottom.  They do an awesome nut roast for veggies like me who don't eat our friends.  (I think that's why the cows liked me 😊)

Friday, April 05, 2019

Say what?!

The first quarter of 2019 is over!  Now that I am a "lady of leisure" I thought that time would be slowing down, but it appears not!

2019 has been quite eventful so far.  Paula arrived for a six week visit on New Year's Day, which got the year off to a great start.  We so enjoyed having her here with us and the weather played ball and produced a couple of lovely snowfalls.  We had some lovely days out and generally enjoyed the family time.

Paula left early in February and then at the end of February, Roxy, Issy, Dan and I set off for South Africa - quite the globe-trotters we all are!  Rox, Paula, the kiddos and I spent a week on our own in Umhlanga, before Grant and Jon joined us.  

The week started out blissfully, with lots of fun time, dinners at Spur, visits with Imps and early morning swims... 

We also had a lovely Kitchen Tea for Paula at Mitchell Park - and she genuinely didn't know about it until she arrived there!

And then.... Paula and I had a car accident.  A lady (who I can only assume was on her cell phone or in a coma...) drove straight through a stop street and T-boned us!  Anyone who knows me knows that I absolutely loathe being in a car at the best of times and I am paranoid and petrified of being in an accident... so this was just the worst.  Paula was a super-star and took charge of the situation, while I sat on the kerb groaning and clutching my badly damaged hand.  An ambulance duly arrived and we were carted off to hospital, it was all quite mortifying!  Paula's car has subsequently been written off.  On the flip side, it could have been so much worse - thankfully our bride-to-be wasn't badly injured and although we were bashed up and bruised, and I had a couple of broken bones in my hand, our injuries didn't interfere with the wedding at all.  Our time in South Africa continued with a birthday party for Issy, meet-ups with friends, a fun Hen's Night for Paula and the arrival of the O'Sullivans from Australia.  

Then it was time to head up to the wedding venue.  We went up to Haycroft on the Thursday and had some time with close friends and family before the wedding on Saturday.  I'll give the wedding a post of it's own - it was so special!  Then it was time to say our good-byes and head home, after an eventful and special time in SA.

I managed to land up with a sinus infection within days of arriving home and no sooner did that start clearing and I got toothache - turns out I cracked a tooth in the car accident as well!  So the end of March was just no fun for me on a personal level at all!  On a more positive note, Spring arrived in the UK while we were in SA and we returned to beautiful daffodils and crocuses.... oh it is SO pretty!