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Friday, 19 October 2012

PixieMum goes out west.

Right, let's get the knitting for Day 13 over. Have done half a hexipuff, then noticed had 19 instead of 20 stitches so will be undoing it. (Please insert your own mild swear word if you like) 

More success in completing one of the large Freecycle wool squares whilst having a chat on phone.

Right. Now the reason for not knitting or blogging was that I was away with the Strollers walking group. The name is becoming more and more apt, at times I found the pace a little slow and was glad to be at the front, striding ahead and then having more of a break and a photo opportunity.

Big difference this year was that I went without Ian. Now I know plenty of women of my age have no one with whom to go away, live on their own, don't wish their husbands to join them (or vice versa of course), but we tend to come as a package. However, Ian's OU maths exam was last Wednesday so there was no way he could lose three days revision so we thought it would be a Good Thing if I went without him so he could revise in peace and quiet.

Yes friends it went fine, I missed him terribly at odd moments, during the Sing Praise we have before Saturday's dinner, at the end of dinner where I suddenly realised that if I didn't go and fetch my coffee I wouldn't have any. Another time was on Saturday afternoon walked into Shaftesbury, it was odd pottering around a strange town on my own. Did consider walking down Gold Hill, but I opted out as I would have had to climb up again to return to the hotel. I had just about coped with the two walks I'd done.

The view of Gold Hill on Sunday morning after church at St Peter's Shaftesbury. It was very misty in the distance, clouds as one sees them from a plane obscuring the views.

Rather pleased that I managed to attend the 8am service, especially as it was BCP, said reverently, clearly with the correct emphasis, no servers to distract. I was amazed that I remembered all the words of the prayers so familiar from my teenage years onwards until the 1980s Series 2 and now Common Worship which can seem banal. BCP makes me think about what the words really mean, and this service, the worshipfulness, the peace and calm emphasised what is missing in my church back home. Additionally the excellent  talk by the priest, without notes, so apt, the church was celebrating Harvest Festival later at their 9.30 service so it was in that context.

Looking back over the weekend, there were some arduous walks as it was so muddy, there was slurry as we walked through a farmyard, there were stiles in a variety of styles and wobbliness and some steep inclines all of which has convinced me that I need more regular cardiovascular exercise and confirmed by the nurse discussing the results of my blood test.  I feel far less breathless than before I went away so we have an appointment next week to see what the local gym offers these old crocks. It has taken a few days to catch up as I have felt very tired, it has been suggested that I may have Delayed onset muscle soreness, nothing that time and paracetamol won't solve.

Just an example of the lovely views we encountered.

On Sunday, we breakfasted after church, group photos were taken before some departed for other destinations but the rest of us convoyed to Stourhead to find the place heaving. Had every National Trust member on Wiltshire and beyond chosen to go there on that beautiful sunny day? Admired the kitchen gardens, checked out the NT second hand bookshop and walked around the lake but no time to go into the house but am encouraged to return on a weekday.

After Stourhead, drove to my Friend-from-junior-school-days, so lots of catching up and chatting before I drove home on Monday. Both drives, on Friday and Monday were nearly two hours non stop, I used the Sat Nav successfully, before I have left it to Ian to set it.

Good night everyone.


  1. I love the picture of Gold Hill, what a beautiful place! So glad to hear you feel better, breathing-wise, for the walks. In my experience, the best you can do against sore muscles is some more exercise - moderately, of course. Stopping for too long will just give you aches, and make it all the harder to start again next time.
    Very touching how you describe missing Ian. Myself being a widow since 2009, I had to learn the hard way to do things on my own.

  2. Our church uses BCP once a month at the early service. On the occasions when I have attended I've also been surprised at how much of the service I still remembered.

    Gold Hill looks a very beautiful place indeed -- very nice picture. As for walking -- I'm slow at best and for the past two weeks have had very bothersome knee so am not walking any more than necessary for the weekend in hopes that it will calm down...

  3. Having been at school before the Good News Bible, multifaith assemblies et al(and that's not a condemnation just a factual statement)I feel the language of the BCP and the King James Bible is an integral part of my childhood and adolescence too. So far as I know even quite modern composers still set the old words of the canticles to music, so sung evensong at our local cathedrals is still the peaceful delight it always has been.
    The walking sounds great if a bit muddy. Living here it's impossible to do anything (including a local shop) without encountering a steep hill climb and I measure my fitness by how out of breath I am if I park at the top of the local carpark! Circumstances force my husband and I to do most things separately these days and one does miss someone to discuss the view or the shop windows with.

  4. I attended a Roman Catholic school and, some years ago, when browsing through the Oxford Book of Quotations, discovered I still remembered most of the Latin Mass. Considering that this was not used after 1963 or 1964 when I was 10, I found this quite surprising as we didn't use it at assemblies, only occasional full services in the chapel.

    My sister works in Shaftesbury, I know Gold Hill well - though from the top looking down, usually. I don't walk down it for the same reason as you!

  5. Lovely photos and it sounds like you had a wonderful trip. I was brought up as a Congregationalist, only becoming an Anglican at the age of 30, so I don't have the same childhood memories of the BCP as you do. My equivalent is the Authorisd Version of the Bible, of which I had to learn chunks at my C of E primary school in the 1950s, and though I will happily read various translations at different times, certain passages only ever sound right in the AV.