Only seven working days to go until we officially stop for our winter break. Talk is of Christmas trees, presents, mulled wine and roast potatoes! Life is a little 'all over the place' at the moment, because there is of course a work schedule remaining to get through, presents to buy (and a tree!), things to gather from the forest, a mother-in-law who will be in hospital over the whole Christmas period, an antique Italian glass to try and get back from the grubby clutches of the UK customs, the house to decorate, accounts to prepare for January, chocolate to eat and whisky to drink....what IS a bloke to do?
Grass has stopped growing at last, hedges too. Thanks to our recent rough storms all the leaves are now out of the trees, which makes a change from the last few years where we were still clearing them in January the next year! This has left just some basic tidying up and pruning to do in the run up to Christmas, which is much more appropriate when it comes to getting some festive karma to settle. We have made lists, many of them, but today we actually became 'Christmassy' and did something about a little on our agenda. Only a half day's work today, but as Amanda had something important to prepare for later in the day, we played in the morning, and I worked in the afternoon. We are off to Wales at the weekend to stay for a few days with Amandas uncle Pastor Pete, and so gifts needed to be purchased for that side of the family in readiness for the big day on the 25th.
We did better than expected, and actually managed to find enough to 'tick off' some other people on the list. It's very tempting when looking through the goods on sale, not to pick up extra pressies for oneself, but I couldn't resist this book called 'Grow Your Own Drugs' by James Wong...well, you've got to haven't you? Mostly medicinal mind you....I think. Then of course we went our separate ways, and for me work beckoned. There were the last of the last leaves to clear, some moss to treat, advice about planting for another customer, and then home, change, grab wife, and off to watch the sunset at The Square & Compass pub at Worth Matravers. It was quite a visit, as beforehand we helped a couple of ladies to get their car out of a ditch, one of which works behind the bar at The Porterhouse pub, and who both we met again at 'The Square' that afternoon. A small world eh?
The village was as tranquil and lovely as ever, with it's pond playing host to the resident ducks.
As nobody was around, we paid a visit to the small church.
And reflected quietly on issues both being faced, and those to come. But the pub beckoned, along with it's excellent ales, views and company.
And all too soon the sun was settling rapidly and temperatures began to drop.
The walk back to the van took us past some fields that caught our eye. The sheen that you can see is the reflection of the setting sun off myriad cobwebs, as far as one could see. Fields and fields appeared the same, and reminded us that even in this cold weather, life goes on under our feet. Every inch covered by a spiders web!
It had been a long, busy, but ultimately fulfilling day.........I think that Hobie feels the same!