Thursday, 24 September 2015

three weekends in late summer

It's been a busy (but very exciting) time recently, with new projects starting life left, right and centre. We've also been out of London for several weekends in a row: at the end of August we spent a weekend in Cambridge - we were staying with D.'s old school friend Dmitri who after many years of studying and work, was getting ready to move to Oxford. We arrived at midday on a Saturday and spent a few hours drifting through colleges, chapels and cloisters, Dmitri telling stories along the way.

The afternoon was spent punting on the Cam. I, funnily enough, had never punted, and I took to it like a duck to water, I truly feel. We made our way merrily down stream, sunlight bouncing off the water, taking it in turns to punt, eat strawberries and drink a good bottle of German wine.

We had supper in Dmitri's college on Saturday night (candlelight, silver, Sauternes) and on Sunday we walked along the river to Grantchester, a nearby village, for lunch. Afterwards we spent a few hours exploring the Fitzwilliam Museum (total heaven!), before getting caught in the rain on our way to the train station.

The following weekend we travelled up to Edinburgh to see D.'s family and to have some fun at the annual festival. We saw funny theatre and acrobatics and lots of other things, but most of our time was spent at home with the poodles, enjoying platefuls of belated Birthday cake, expertly made for me by D.'s wonderful sister.

A week later we were in Oxfordshire for a fabulous wedding party. It was lots of fun. On Sunday (with terrible hangovers) we headed over to The Wild Rabbit in Kingham for lunch (fish goujons, delicious roast lamb). I highly recommend this place, with its adorable rabbit logo (illustrated by Hugo Guinness). We pottered around nearby Chipping Norton, darted in and out of antique shops, then drove over to Hidcote Manor Garden, a place I'd read about on our way to the party. Hidcote is one of the best-known and most influential Arts and Crafts gardens in Britain, with its linked 'rooms' of hedges, rare trees, shrubs and herbaceous borders. The whole experience was utterly, utterly delightful. We strolled through the garden 'rooms', afternoon light filtering through the leaves, an early autumn chill just notable in the air, quite delirious to be amongst so much beauty.

I loved this set of croquet mallets, found abandoned on the edge of a lawn.

D. with a perfect pavilion poking out from behind a hedge.

We were with our great friend (and D.'s business partner) Charlotte, who had never been to Chipping Campden, which sits just down the road from Hidcote. It was lovely to be able to show her this beautiful old market town with its elegant terraced High Street and honey-coloured limestone buildings. Total bliss...

As for those new projects, more updates to come!

2 comments:

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