Sunday, 30 December 2007

Christmas Walk

The sun came out briefly as we assembled by the white five-bar gate which separates the farmhouse from the busy B road connecting two villages which, a decade or so ago no doubt was just a quiet country lane. Today there was little traffic on the road and we soon headed off into deep countryside, following the thin trails linking one footpath with another, chatting and admiring the beautiful, unspoilt, wintry scenery, always keeping the Church Tower in view. Our lodestone. After a while we met the road again briefly, beside the old abandoned windmill on top of the rise, before crossing the ancient churchyard shaded by yew trees, and back into open country.

An hour or so later we emerged by a lovely hop-strewn pub, log fire blazing, and a very welcome drink and lunch. One or two people peeled off after lunch, but the die-hards set off back across country, following The Man in the Woolly Jumper who had the map, losing our way occasionally, finding ourselves in someone else's driveway at one point, but always finding a way through in the end.

The light was fading by the time we got back to the house, my sons grumbling by now. Friends rallied round, someone put the kettle on, TMITWJ lit the fire and mince pies were warmed in the oven. After a reviving cup of tea a few more people arrived and bottles of fizz popped as the fire warmed us through, conversation flowed and friends and family relaxed together by the brightly lit Christmas Tree.


  1. Now that to me sounds like the perfect day....
    May you and your family have a fabulous New Year.

  2. Thank you Boatwoman. And the same to you and yours.

  3. Lovely day, and a Happy New Year to you, Marianne!
    May your year be a good un!

  4. sounds a great walk. We also do a fine line in getting slightly lost if I am in charge and following the map most efficiently if it is Ian's responsibility.
    Happy new year!

  5. Hopes for a happy, peaceful 2008, Marianne.

  6. It's wonderful to think that people can still wander freely in the countryside like that, Marianne!

    And your talk of lodestars reminds me of how nearly I used to get lost myself, walking my infant grand-daughter in London's Regents Park! Then, it was the Telecom Tower on one side, and the minaret of the Mosque on the other, that kept me from losing my way...

    I have now posted the end of the story btw! The blog experiment has worked wonderfully for me - but now I have to go away and try to make-it on my own. I wish you and your family all blessings and good things in 2008 though - and shall try to come back and visit you whenever I can. We started out on this adventure as blog-novices together, after all - and your support has always meant a great deal to me.

    We'll keep in touch anyway, I'm sure of that.X

  7. What a lovely day - from beginning to end!

    Hope 2008 continues in the same vein for you.

  8. I think that day was the highlight of my Christmas. Thank you all for your lovely comments and good wishes and a Happy New Year to all of you. May it bring good things.

    Please spare a thought or a prayer for my brother and siser-in-law and their four daughters who are currently caught up in the terrible events in Nairobi.

    May peace descend soon.

  9. What a perfect picture postcard scene! Your poor family in Nairobi, I am watching it constantly on the news. It really is terrifying. Any news yet?

  10. They are in regular contact and are following advice to stay indoors. It is very worrying. Thank you DM. Will visit soon.

  11. Hello Marianne:
    It sounds as though you had a very nice walk. Jo and I did have a quiet 2008, we had one of our Grand daughters help us ring it in! It was nice. We hope your new year is nothing short of spectaculer...!!

  12. Sounds fab ... and who is the man in the woolly jumper?

  13. It was special M&M. He's the winter version of The Man in The Pink Shirt. I guess you've been out of touch for a while, so you missed the bit where we got back together again.

    Glad you had a good New Year's Eve JD

  14. Ahhh, what quintessential English bliss. The green and pleasant footpaths, the pub, the fire, the 'we shall fight them on the beaches' mettle that had you walking home again, then warmth, mince pies and champagne. Oh and a bit of love interest by way of TMITWJ.
    Perfect, you write so well.

  15. Sounds lovely Marianne. Hope '08 finds calm and peace of mind for both you and youngest son.
    Take care

  16. One of those memories that stay with you PITK. If only life were always like that. I'm back at work and it's a nasty shock to the system.

    Thank you @themill. Who knows, 2008 may be the year we come up north. Good to know there's a lovely cottage up there somewhere.

  17. I like your way of life, it sounds good! Happy New Year to you Marianne.

  18. Hello Marianne
    just dropping by after a long, long absence from one and all. Life got in the way of blogging, or something! Anyway, a belated Happy New Year to you. Keep well,
    Livvy x

  19. Good to see you both, Merry and Livvy and thank you for looking in.

    I am having lots of problems with my internet connection at the moment and can rarely get online. When things are resolved, I shall be back.


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