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Simple Pleasures ...


An entry from my diary for this week.

The weather gods must have been listening to my prayers; we had a brief window of sunshine  today (Sunday).  After breakfast of poached egg on Marmite toast I donned my Wellington boots and headed off across the fields whilst David watched the Remembrance Service on the TV.


Everywhere was very muddy after the rain all day yesterday (Saturday). Squelch.  Squelch.  Squelch (great word).  The grass was heavy with glittering dew and everywhere shone in the sunlight.  I walked a little then just stood still taking everything in, then walked a little more - even a short walk takes me an age. 
Not a sound, not another person in sight - just me and the wind in the trees - I felt like the last person on earth, it was so quiet and peaceful.


I cracked my knee as I climbed over a stile; it was very sore and hampered my progress. I struggled back up the hill, my heart thumping with the effort of it - but still happy to be out of doors, albeit limping and out of breath.

 
The last field near home was muddy where the cows had trampled the ground, I had to keep my wits about me to avoid cow pats and try to remain upright over the rough and boggy terrain.  When I arrived home I made a cup of tea and  switched on the radio to listen to the afternoon drama - Watership Down by Richard Adams - so long since I read the book.


Later I finished reading 'The Little Paris Bookshop' - I loved this passage:-

"With every bite of food steeped in the herbs and oils of Provence he seems to absorb a little more of the land that lay ahead, it was as if he were eating the surrounding countryside.  Already he could taste the wild banks of the Loire, covered in forests and vineyards."


Today I decided to have a mooch around the town, supposedly getting ideas for Christmas presents
 
 
 - I didn't make it much further than the bookshop, where I stayed - my idea of heaven. I replaced a book that had been totally ruined by the flood water earlier in the year (what a long time ago that seems now).

 
I also found a  card, which I loved - and bought that too - it is a picture of a member of the Auxilliary Territorial Service (ATS) sitting on her suitcase beside the luggage trolley as she waits for her train.  She is accompanied by a dog identified as the unit mascot (1944).


I finished my small buying spree with a bunch of flowers and made my way back home.



Simple Pleasures by Angela Wybrow
 
In our lives, there are little pleasures,
Little moments we love to treasure,
Things which, on your face, put a smile,
Even if only for the briefest while.
 
Elaine


Comments

  1. The Little Paris Bookshop - there's a coincidence. I was reading it yesterday for a while when I wasn't watching the boats. Half way through and loving it.

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    1. Everyone I know seems to have read it - very enjoyable.

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  2. These are awesome pictures, thanks for sharing.

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  3. 'Watership Down'. It's an age since I read that! How lovely to listen to it on the radio! Your invigorating walk sounded just the thing for the sort of day it was. I love it when I'm in the country and I'm all alone with nature! You bought some lovely flowers after your visit to the book shop.
    Wonderful quotation from 'The Little Paris Bookshop'!
    Have a lovely weekend!

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    1. I remembered so much of it and to hear it on the radio was a treat and brought the book to life. I do prefer walking on my own - if someone else is with you I don't think you notice so much and you have to talk when you don't feel like it :)

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  4. English shops make such efforts over their Christmas window displays, here we do have some public decorations, but nothing like that window. Lovely.

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    1. This particular shop always does lovely window displays, the Christmas lights have gone up in the town - no public Christmas tree yet though.

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  5. Such a charming post Elaine.
    I do hope your knew is ok now.........breathless and sore knee you carried on, well done you. A girl after my own heart.

    What a lovely Christmas display.

    a bookshop with a cup of coffee is a perfect way to spend a few hours :)

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    1. knew, what is that about. Of course I meant knee :))

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    2. Thanks Cheryl - my knee is still sore and has developed a rather ugly scab - I was trying to keep from slipping as the stiles were rather slimy after the rain - unfortunately I wasn't careful enough - but it was still worth it to get out and enjoy a bit of sun after all the dreary weather we have had.

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  6. I shall look out for that Laurie Lee for my winter reading. Love the Christmas window - we have thick snow on the hills today. x

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    1. I bet you are pleased about the snow - so early! Laurie Lee is my favourite writer the pictures he paints with words are so evocative, if only I could write as well as he.

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  7. A nice post and lovely pictures. Simple pleasures are so often the best ones. I hope that your knee is okay. Flighty xx

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    1. Thanks Flighty.n I am glad I can enjoy the small pleasures 'cos I can't afford the big ones :)

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  8. What a lovely pot pourri of delightful things to do Elaine !! Beautiful countryside, a bit of Christmas shopping charmingly cut short and a few treats to bring home with you .... just a bit of a glitch on th knee front !! Hope it's feeling better now. XXXX

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    1. Thanks Jackie. Like you and London for me it is the countryside which gives me such pleasure - a bit of shopping and reading a few fresh flowers and I am a happy bunny. The knee is sore and bruised but I will survive :)

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  9. I love your sense of adventure Elaine. A girl after my own heart. I'd rather be outside than in - though ask me a month into winter and I'll probably feel different. Such pretty pictures and I am visiting the bookstore today and will look for that book. I need some good books to read.

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    1. Even as a child I went out adventuring and have never really lost it. Winter is a challenge that's for sure but I still manage a walk every day. I love Laurie Lee and read everything of his that I can get hold of.

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  10. Ouch! I hope your knee is ok ...

    What a lovely post again, your pictures are lovely.
    I do like this time of year and can spend ages looking in shop windows at the brilliant displays ... but put me in a bookshop which also sells cards and other goodies and I'm in heaven!!!

    Enjoy your weekend, and all good wishes for next week too.

    All the best Jan

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    1. Yes it was an ouch - luckily there was no one around to hear me swearing :). Oh bookshops I luv 'em - I could spend a fortune and do have to show some restraint - not easy !

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  11. How true that simple pleasures give us special moments in life. I hope your knee is OK now. I love old, black and white photos, too - I love to imagine the stories behind them.

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    1. Even if I had a lot of money I would still opt for the simple pleasures - little moments to cherish :). Black and white photos are so evocative of the period aren't they. I love the way the little dog is sitting with his leg stuck out resigned to waiting for the train - aww.

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  12. Those chrysanthemums are lovely colours.

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  13. I'd have to take a drive to be able to walk along a narrow country road. Life in suburbia isn't half as much fun as walking my grandparent's land, but it's so far away. Thanks for the photographs.

    I couldn't finish the book. Is it worth the time investment? Honestly?

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    1. We are fortunate to have lovely countryside on our doorstep - it gives me such a lot of pleasure. As for the book, it had its faults but there were some well written passages which I enjoyed.

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  14. The Little Paris Bookshop. People either love it or loathe it. I just read some reviews. I haven't read it and I don't think I will. Your walk was very peaceful. It is raining hard now so I don't think you will be out walking today. I am trying to imagine what you are like Elaine. You seem a very solitary person from your posts.

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    1. Hi Rachel
      A friend lent the book to me, she loved it - I had mixed feelings, some bits I liked, some not. I like being on my own mostly when I am walking - I guess I am a bit of a loner. Today though I met up with two friends for the afternoon, so I can be quite gregarious if I need to be.

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  15. Lovely photos of your simple pleasures. I like the look of Laurie Lee's Village Christmas, I hadn't heard of the Little Paris Bookshop, I must find out about it:)

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    1. Thanks Rosie. His stories are short but lovely to dip into. I think you will enjoy The Little Paris Bookshop.

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  16. Yes, that's exactly what I like too, going out in stormy rainy weather, slipping in the mud (lol) and afterwards tea and a good book, that really makes my day. We don't have shops decorated for Christmas this early, we have first St. Nicolaas on December 5th, but I like it in the English way.

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    1. We have had terrible weather these last two day, so much rain - even I didn't venture out in it.

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  17. Ah Elaine love your simple pleasures. Smiled when I read you got not too far with your Christmas shopping. Bookstores have a way of keeping me too. Loved the card you found. Have a great week. Hugs!

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    1. Oh dear, my shopping trip was a bit of a disaster, but at least I had a good look round the bookshop, there is still plenty of time to get gifts, fingers crossed.

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  18. Ah Elaine love your simple pleasures. Smiled when I read you got not too far with your Christmas shopping. Bookstores have a way of keeping me too. Loved the card you found. Have a great week. Hugs!

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  19. Oh, what a lovely array of simple pleasures! Sorry about your knee, I do hope it's a little better now!
    I did enjoy these pictures, especially the blue sky and birds, the close up of the autumn leaves and your wellies! Christmas is coming far too quickly, how I dislike shopping....sighs, that's a pretty shop window though, that certainly would have pulled me inside.xxx

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    1. Thanks Dina. The knee is just about OK now, it was really sore for a few days, I must be more careful when I am out and about, as I tend to go off the beaten track and if I did really hurt myself no one would know where I was as I don't have a phone! The autumn leaves are all a bit soggy now and all the rain has practically stripped the trees bare. I don't really want to think about Christmas, do you.

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  20. Dear Elaine, thank you for the title by Laurie Lee - I will instantly order it! (In winter I always read Felix Timmermann's "Sankt Nikolaus in Not" translated from Flemish into German - and if Christmas becomes to "candy sweet", I read Charlotte MacLeod's "Rest you merry" - very funny).

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    1. I have certain books that I read at this time of year too my favourite is short stories by Susan Hill - The Christmas Collection - they put me in the right mood for the season.

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  21. I haven't read either of the books you've mentioned. I am reading the Harry Potter books for the first time because my grandchildren are reading them, but when I take a break halfway through, which should I read first? The Little Paris Bookshop or The Village Christmas?

    I like to walk alone too because I absorb more. I went Christmas shopping yesterday too...in a bookstore. In my estimation, that is the most enjoyable holiday shopping there is.

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    1. I don't really like recommending books as it is such a personal thing, but we all know that Laurie Lee writes perfect prose -'this book is all small essays, so more of a dip into book -'whereas The Little Paris Bookshop is a continuous read with an unusual storyline - I found most of it very enjoyable - written by a woman from a man's point of view.

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    2. The Village Christmas it is then. Thank you. I think I secretly wanted you to nudge me in that direction, which you have. I will order it when the Thanksgiving feast has been digested as our small American library carries only one of Lee's books and it isn't this one.

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