I've just had a weekend away, staying with an old friend and her husband and their dog, Ginger.
My friend is old in more ways than one. She is my age and we are both well into our twilight years. But we first met at Torquay Girls' Grammar School when we were in our teens, so we really are old friends. I only have one friend who is older in that sense of the word - someone I met at primary school age - and they are also known to each other and whenever I see one of them, she asks after the other.
So here is the story of the weekend. I left Jade with my family, who were having their own friends to stay and were pleased that my bedroom would be free. I let the train take the strain and after about an hour's journey, was met at the other end by my friend, who ferried us on to her home in the country. She and her husband have been there for a lot of years. The house is one that is carved out of the estate of a 'big house', and the garden is surrounded by mature trees which shield them from all the individual new homes that have been built around them. Neighbours are not often evident and it seems to me like a peaceful haven. I always relax straight away when I get there.
Another bonus is the saluki-like greyhound they acquired from a greyhound rescue centre, who is the most laid back dog ever. Yesterday we took her for a walk around Bishops Waltham, which is a delightful little nearby town, where everyone greets you with a smile and a comment about the dog or the weather or some such.
The day before we left her with her master and took ourselves off to Mottisfont Abbey, which is a favourite haunt of mine that I have written about before in this blog. This time it was showing an art exhibition of paintings of trees which included some pictures by a friend of my friend. Of course we also had to go and see the walled garden, which was still a delight although it was way past the time for the olde English roses to bloom. There was colour outside the walls though. Here are some pics I took of the flowers and foliage.
After being without the internet on my laptop for nearly two weeks, I finally have a new BrightBox courtesy of EE, and I can post again. Yippee. My faithful Belkin was working hard to connect everything, but couldn't get me internet access so it has been consigned to the stationery drawer, where it will probably languish for a while before exiting for an unmentionable future. It was touch and go with the BrightBox when I got it set up, but when I turned everything on yesterday, we quickly got connected.
Everyone is pleased, but granddaughter jumped for joy that she can get Youtube on her i-pad and can play on the Xbox with friends from the London area.
We've had some good weather recently, and a lovely walk on Sandbanks beach on Sunday while the lamb roastie was cooking. The dogs loved it, as they do most of the off road walks we have around here. Here they are both waiting patiently by the front door for their humans to be ready.
Now we are a two dog household one of the problems is that when Rafi gets excited, Jade joins in and they both chased a local cat in the garden recently, after which Jade's limp has returned with a vengeance. The vet says she must still have moderate exercise so she still come for walks with us, but we can't go too far and she musn't run much, not that she wants to.