This evening, sitting in the Great Western Arms in Blockley, Gloucestershire, we raised a glass to being away. We both felt the day had been a long one but it felt great to be ‘somewhere else’. In this Plague Year, our travel distances have been decidedly limited.
Our previous longest drive has been to Arlesford, 21 miles away. Today we drove 100 miles and wound up in the Cotswolds. As I said, it felt good.
Okay, the puppies didn’t feel too good about it when we dropped them off at the kennel but they never do. We were discussing their habit of shivering whenever we leave them. Interestingly they never carry on when we leave them with Sue. In fact, I’m sure Emma prefers staying with Sue than us.
Mind you, their shivering soon stopped when the woman at the kennels stooped down and said hello to them. They suddenly realised they knew her and trotted happily off to their accommodation for the next fortnight.
Most of the day was then spent packing and preparing the house. With the advent of a greenhouse, there is lots to do with regards to the garden. Watering systems to prime, neighbours to strong arm into helping, etc. It was all pretty much go, go, go.
We also made a trip to Waitrose to save us having to find a supermarket when we arrived. This of course meant a lot of extra packing but, given we’re not catching a ferry and hiring a car in St Malo, this was just a case of filling Max.
Actually, the food and extra baggage made our two suitcases of clothes look quite meagre.
Eventually we climbed into Max and headed north.
Two hours later we pulled up outside the weaver’s cottage we’ll be living in for a bit. We unpacked Max, quickly filling the little fridge, had a cup of tea/coffee and happily discovered the TV had Netflix.
Refreshed, we then headed out for a bit of a wander around the town.
Blockley has an impressive church (St Peter and St Paul) and a lottery funded shop/cafe. It also has a lovely green space in the middle complete with war memorial, bowls club and play area with a slide that ends in a rather steep fall that seems to vanish into an abyss.
We gave up looking for the Crown Hotel and, instead, ended up at the Great Western Arms.
Social distancing has emptied the pub of most of its tables and chairs. It has also meant that the bar staff serve you at your table. It’s all a bit odd but it was very pleasant. We had a drink before heading back down to the cottage.
Ours is on the right of the photograph. It’s the first of the three storey places – the windows of the first storey are open. The small, single storey section to the right of it is the kitchen.
I spent a bit of time in the kitchen knocking up dinner before we settled down to finishing season three of The Crown.
It’s great to finally be away.