Today was the first day that actually felt like summer. The sun was out, it was hot and lots more people were wearing summer clothes (as opposed to just me).
Having been forewarned that it would be hot, we decided to take the poodles up to Hankley, early, to avoid the heat of the afternoon. Quite apart from the fact that there’s not many people about in the mornings, it was a very good idea as the temperature climbed steadily through the day. There’s not a lot of shade at Hankley.
We haven’t been there for over two months and it’s lovely to see the beginnings of the heather popping up; little dots of purple in the brown. Also the swathe of burn has all but vanished under grass and small trees. You can almost imagine there was never a fire.
Back at home we settled down for lunch before heading back out for the monthly market at the Maltings. I didn’t know these happened but they do, on the first Saturday of every month. There’s a lot of stalls selling everything from cakes to second hand, fancy cribbage boards.
We had a pretty thorough look at everything, buying nothing before settling down under the big tree for a coffee (Mirinda) and beer (me) at the Riverside Cafe.
On the way back we stopped off at the Ashcroft Gallery (a little art gallery in a car park) so Mirinda could buy a tiny, delicate ‘treasure’ bowl with two little birds painted inside. It was very delicate and quite difficult to buy.
One of the women behind the counter, busy wrapping someone else’s purchase, asked Mirinda what she wanted. Mirinda told her and the woman then proceeded to ignore her while she continued wrapping. The other woman, eventually, asked Mirinda what she wanted. Biting her tongue, Mirinda told her as well.
They went and collected the bowl and, back at the counter, Mirinda asked if she could have it in a box, please. It’s very delicate and we were walking, after all. The woman said it didn’t come in a box but she could wrap it in tissue.
I should say that, at this point, I’d have walked out of the shop, buying nothing but, in an unusual display of patience, Mirinda persevered. She asked the woman for any box.
There was a bit of faffing about but, eventually, the woman found a big box which she packed out in bubble wrap and tissue paper, ensuring that the bowl arrived home safely.
During dinner, we watched Oz the Great and Powerful which we thoroughly enjoyed. So, pretty much, a perfect day.