Jerry and I decided that amidst the moving mania, we ought to make time to experience a few country pursuits before the packers and boxes descend on us (also because I am known for my ‘last minute Larry’ attitude towards such things and the move feels like ages away)! So we packed ourselves off (sorry couldn’t resist the pun) to Highclere aka Downton Abbey for the day and set about enjoying all the sights and sounds of the Highclere Countryman fair! Country fairs, dear Reader, are the summer staple for countryside lovers and a bit of a firm favourite with Jerry and I, bringing back memories of the county shows of our childhoods.
Well, it really didn’t disappoint, the whole day was UTTERLY brilliant. Falconry displays, jousting knights, a food festival tent and hundreds of country stalls from the sublimely satisfactory amount of tweed to the hilarious including a wonderful double take moment when I spied a ‘I’m a NOB’ badge. Yes…dear Reader…a badge for members of the National Organisation of Beaters and Pickers Up. Bet you didn’t know they were using that acronym! I was also astonished by the sheer volume of countryside gear on offer. Just how many camouflage jackets and boiler suits does one need in the countryside? Thank goodness, I had read all the helpful country fashion advice put together by the lovely Bea at Life After London (with help from Out of the City) otherwise I might have come away with some outfits that would really turn heads in our new village!
Perhaps the best thing of all was the fact that we could take Monty too! Child AND dog friendly…! One can see immediately, dear Reader, why such events are universally popular! Monty was adored by many a passer-by with ooohs and aaahs of “Is he is a Springer? He looks just like…” and was thoroughly chuffed with the overwhelming number of opportunities for hoovering up leftover lunches! He was also glued to the Gundog Field Trials and loved watching all the dogs retrieving and jumping over bales! I wondered if he was sizing up the competition for next year’s Countryman fair! Jerry and I (well I say Jerry but it was mostly me) got thoroughly carried away with all the ‘doggy’ stands and we came away with yet another lead for the Montster. That would be lead number 3….. I just can’t help myself!
After 4 hours or so of carrying Poppy, Jerry and I called time on the fair, especially as Poppy was considerably heavier after demolishing a hog roast sandwich with all the trimmings and poor old Jerry was developing every parent’s worst nightmare, “Backpack Back”. With sleepy children and a pooped puppy, we headed back to town and vowed that we would go again next year. Leaving Highclere, Jerry even managed to have the girls spotting ‘Lannies’ (his Land Rover obsession has reached fever pitch now the move is looming closer). It would seem that every journey is now to be accompanied by the excited whoops of ‘LANNY’ from Poppy and Primrose….so the sooner Jerry has one, the better, dear Reader!