Much of my time lately has been taken up with planning for my new fashion show on Wednesdays, and that has been reflected in my most recent postings of this blog, so I thought I'd take a moment to fill you in on my last few weekends – they have been as busy as my time at work.
We have been away for the past three weekends – for a night in Arundel in West Sussex, to visit my brother in the Lake District and then we dusted the cobwebs off our motorhome for our first outing of the year to celebrate my birthday in Dorset on what must have been the coldest, wettest March weekend in years if not decades!
We have been making the most of the time before Billy returns home from his adventure in Canada. He is back this week, having gained his Level 2 snowboarding qualification after a four day exam last week. It's a great achievement for a 17 year old – he was too young to celebrate with all the others on the course as, being underage, he isn't allowed into any of the bars in the town! He is really looking forward to coming home and I can't wait to see him again, although I know it won't be long until he has itchy feet again. I expect he will have grown up a lot in the three months he's been away.
Arundel is a town I had never been to, and we arrived in the dark for a discounted Friday night booking in a hotel on the main street. We wandered around and found many interesting shop windows to look into and several restaurants to choose between for dinner, but it was in the morning that I realised just what a lovely place it is. At the bottom of the High Street is the River Arun and within a few minutes walk from the hotel we were walking Barney along the towpath into the countryside, with the majestic Arundel Castle above us. Later, we were took the short drive to the coast to allow Barney to indulge in his favourite pastime, chasing waves. Only a night away, but a real recharging of batteries.
The following weekend we made the journey north with my youngest brother, Andrew, to another of my brothers, Pete, who had persuaded Andrew and our daughter Bex to enter a Lake District fell run, which is what he spends most weekends doing. Unfortunately the race was cancelled but they all wanted to go for a run anyway, and decided to run to the top of the Old Man of Coniston mountain (as you do, if you're mad!) This was Bex's first experience of fell running, but she absolutely loved it. Pete took some photos to show us just how mad they are! (There was a foot of snow at the top…)
I really enjoy the space, the air and the sky in the Lake District – I'm happy to walk rather than run, but just get such a sense of freedom and getting away from it all when I'm there that I always vow to not leave it so long again until my next visit.
And then, to my birthday weekend. My last two birthdays have been celebrated in Dorset and Cornwall in gloriously warm spring sunshine. As we returned to Dorset we knew it would be different, but my word, how the rain came down! We were lucky to miss the snow, but it was SOO cold! Our motorhome, however, was cosy and we proved how we won't just be fair weather travellers!
We enjoyed a tasty fireside meal in the Thimble pub in Piddlehinton, got blown along the beaches at West Bay and Charmouth and enjoyed the shops and galleries in Lyme Regis where Olley bought me my present – a stunning bronze sculpture of a mad March hare with huge personality (and rather large ears, too!) We both enjoy exploring and the slightly nomadic lifestyle travelling with your own bed can offer, and we're now busy planning a trip to France for the summertime. Hopefully, the sun will have made an appearance by then – as we shiver towards Easter, we could all do with some warmth and brightness.
But I live in hope of a scorching summer – the last two springs have been warm and early, followed by summers not worth writing home about. The cold spell now surely bodes well for a good summer, and the crows are nesting high. This, according to folklore, is a sign predicting a fine summer.
Have a good week, and take care.
Love Kathy x