What a busy few weeks it has been! Harvest celebrations, dinner parties in the village, Primrose’s birthday, her party complete with farm animals in our garden and a hilarious moment in the dark changing a Land Rover tyre with Jerry and one of the villagers…… I am definitely ready for a rest in the dark with a large gin and tonic, dear Reader!
Autumn is rushing around too it would seem! Our little landscape is changing again and walks have become muddier and leaf-strewn. Everywhere you look, you can see that the harvest has well and truly been brought in. Gathering with all the villagers to celebrate the bounty in a neighbour’s barn, Jerry, Primrose, Poppy and I felt rather like we had stepped into ‘dreams of foregone times’ last week. Hops hanging from the ceiling, checked tablecloths and wine flowing, homemade shepherd’s pies made by the ladies of the village (and of course, yours truly) as well as crumbles galore, the whole village sat together following the Sunday service to eat, drink and generally make merry! A time honoured tradition, made even more special by the whole village singing “Happy Birthday” to Primrose. Primrose was mortified, slumping further and further down her chair until she was almost under the table! Poor love! Mind you, Primrose wasn’t the only one to blush with embarrassment that day. Asked by the village harvest committee to create a floral display for one of the church windows, I had no idea of the brief and ended up creating a rustic autumnal wreath to sit amongst a sea of really rather elegant blooms. One villager called it ‘charming’. I wondered if this was village vernacular was ‘a pile of old rubbish’. However, I did at least manage to make it all from things in our garden and although it wasn’t the most beautiful tribute to the harvest in the church, it did have a bit of Margot charm. Well, at least Jerry and the girls thought so!
Best of all, was the amazing haul of vegetables we were given as we left the harvest lunch. The village is awash with fantastic kitchen gardens, orchards and flower gardens. I shall to have to up my game seriously for next year. Squash, artichokes, potatoes, courgettes, purple and orange carrots….I could hardly carry my handbag as it was brimming with veg! Dear Reader, I had no idea that pattypans really existed outside of Beatrix Potter but here they are..
From harvests and growing your own food……we even managed to parade (albeit briefly) as a smallholding for Primrose’s birthday party. 2 donkeys, 2 goats, 2 pigs, 2 sheep, 2 turkeys, 2 bantams, 2 call ducks, a mini colony of guinea pigs and rabbits and one extremely well behaved dog (note, dear Reader, that it was most certainly not Monty, who was kept inside for fear of him devouring a duck). A veritable mini Noah’s Ark and all in OUR GARDEN! A huge hit with children and grown ups alike. I was happy to play farmer’s wife and it did get me thinking about how marvellous it might be to rear a pig next year when we are a little more settled. Jerry nearly had a coronary when he heard the farmer who brought the livestock to the cottage, saying that he would happily give us the Kune Kune weaners he had brought that day. Apparently they do make the most delicious sausages! Considering that I have finally managed to persuade Jerry to let me have some chickens, I think that asking for a pig for Christmas might be a step too far. For now, dear Reader, for now…….!
Well I like your Autumn flowers … what a glorious read, so evocative of seasons of mists etc. Glad you’re enjoying your new life
Oh you are kind! I feel truly lucky to be living here. x
Sounds like you’re having a good time. Your church flower arrangement story made me laugh – I haven’t been promoted from the back corner windowsill yet … after 14 yrs!
btw patty pans are individual fluted metal pastry pie/tart tins http://images.bidorbuy.co.za/user_images/379/1149379_110301171914_patty_pans.JPG
Oh! Oh, I’m so jealous! Our village is stuffed full of dilapidated orchards, rather than kitchen gardens, so we wake up every morning to plastic bags of cooking apples. A sneaky game of pass-the-parcel has evolved, and the same wormy, half-mushed nightmares are orbiting Horley over and over again.
Anyway, I think your village sounds lovely.
Lady above…I was asked in 2005 to do the flowers and brasses at our church, and I get the willies easily in old places, so I took my dog (at the time, a German Shepherd) and my babies in with me. We were there barely five minutes before the dog started barking and growling at the pulpit, and the babies screaming, and we all ran away. I had to ring the head of the Guild to explain I was scared of ghosts – she was so not impressed!
I LOVE this story Carlie! It really made me chortle!!! You can write an essay in the comment box any time! xxxx
Ooh Celia, thanks for clearing that patty pan thing up! I am delighted to know that it is a tart tin as well as a type of squash! Am assuming that squash was named after the fluted tin as it the vegetable lookalike! I bet your back corner windowsill looks glorious xx
Oh God, I’ve had a glass of wine, sorry Margot – didn’t mean to write an essay in your comment box!
You are just too funny. Your life really does sound like something from a bygone era! Can’t wait to hear all about he party! I shall be sharing your lovely blog on my ‘Friday Favourites’ this week. Forgotten how much I enjoy it!
Suzanne – thank you!!!! You are sweet! Thank you very much for including me on your favourites. xx
Sounds like a great Harvest lunch and a lovely village – ours is not quite as traditional but still a lovely bunch of people that socialise together a lot with suppers full of wonderful homemade stuff! Enjoy the chickens. We love ours and are very tempted by a pig or two as well!