We had such a nice weekend planned; travel down to Bath Thursday evening, stay with J&T until Sunday, then go on to J&S for another couple of days. The plans were full of good food and long walks in the spring filled valleys.
Bluebells in woods below Westwood copyright Cherry Potts 2012
We started well, with a walk round the fields and woods of the Limpley Stoke Valley, in glorious sunshine with A instructing the boys on botany as we went.
Pretty quickly everyone was able to identify Celandine, Bluebell, Wood Anemone,Stitchwort, red and white Deadnettle, Yellow Archangel, and Herb Robert.
The following day was more urban with a visit to Wells, involving some unlikely retail opportunities with T buying hoses for the dishwasher which seems to want to leak on his newly stained floor, and A finding some shoes we think will match her outfit for her daughter’s wedding at the end of the month. A also fell upon Lardy cake, a local delicacy (not that it’s delicate) which is increasingly hard to get. Thanks to ‘Burns the Bread’ for this treat. Then we had a walk round the cathedral having rejected the Bishop’s palace as too expensive. (This was a first visit for T, but not for J who visited in his teens, and not for A and I; we stayed in Wells for a week yonks ago, and at Croscombe more recently, and came back for another look then. A lovely building that is worth several visits, for its west front,
The dead rising on west front Wells Catherdral copyright Cherry Potts 2012
and its glorious clock. We coincided with the clock striking at 11:00 inside, and saw the knights jousting, and 12:00 outside for the knights whacking the bells. very satisfying. Wells also has a reputation with us for the astonishing language on its monuments. There is one that describes the deceased as
A pattern for her sex, regretted by not a few, deplored by her husband and children
which just goes to show how language has changed since the eighteenth century; (and makes me think of how disappointing PD James’ Austen sequel Death Comes to Pemberley is, and how Reginald Hill does it better in There are No Ghosts in the Soviet Union)
We took a look at Vicar’s Close, a delight that on previous visits was locked up.
I occasionally have a fancy to live somewhere like this, but I wouldn’t want people like us peering at my house, and the gardens aren’t big enough. we snacked our way around the market place, and then headed back for an afternoon of cutting wood on T’s part, and barrowing it to the store, on A’s, then a last walk up round the valley before tea.
Snacking in Wells copyright Cherry Potts 2012
Easter Sunday started with another walk to Westwood by a different route, taking in more botany and an old quarry that has been used as a dump through the ages, full of broken bottles. On the way down the track to the boy’s home, disaster struck, and A, who is a bit given to falling in, through, or on to any obstacle or danger, slipped on slightly wet stones and went down with a crack onto her back, with her right leg twisted every which way. It looked very nasty indeed, but she could straighten it after a couple of goes, and move her foot, and wriggle her toes, but not put any weight on it. After not very helpful advice from NHS direct, we opted for J getting the car (we were only a few minutes from the house) and an ice pack and cup of tea interval while A decided what further treatment she needed. This led to a couple of hourswith the very kind nurses at the local minor injuries centre in the Community Hospital in Trowbridge (the very building A was born in 70 years ago) and opportunities for J and A to reenact Willoughby’s meeting with Marianne in Sense and Sensibility several times as he carried her to and from the car and so on.
No x-ray was available as it was a weekend, but despite the bank holiday they invited us back for the following day, for xray and plastering, which will almost certainly be necessary as ligaments badly damaged, if no bones broken. So there’s another visit to the community hospital booked for later. Train home clearly out of the question, and we have been negotiating a taxi the whole way with a very pleasant young man, D. J&S are bringing the meal they planned to J&T’s so at least we’ll get to see them, if not go for the walk we’d had planned. Mulling on the point of planning…
© Cherry Potts 2012