Hello everyone! We have now been back from our adventures for over a month. It has gone beyond that immediate ‘it seems so long ago already!’ feeling that hits you when you get off the plane in your home country – my memories of Japan now have a dreamy, unreal quality, like I doubt it even happened. I still miss it though; not always, just in sudden pangs when I wasn’t really thinking about it at all. Of all the countries I have to go and fall in love with, it has to be one all the way across the world.
Plenty to be getting on with back here anyway. About two weeks ago we moved into a lovely little cottage in a Gloucestershire village called Frampton on Severn, which is like the platonic ideal of what a village should be. It has beaming vicars on bicycles (well, just the one vicar actually), a fish and chip van that visits every week (it parks up next to a field full of cows, so on our first night when Tom and I got our inaugural takeaway, he got the food while I chatted to the animals), a thriving local community with things like conker championships and scarecrow competitions and a billion different clubs (including the WI), and, apparently, the longest village green in England. Oh, and it also boasts a pub called the Three Horseshoes which sells a ‘three shu pie’ consisting of cauliflower cheese, mash, and a filling of your choice all together under a pastry crust.
Our cottage has a working fireplace and wood-beamed ceilings and a lovely garden complete with greenhouse (!), and possibly the nicest landlord ever. He and his family left us flowers and a bottle of Prosecco on moving day, and have been the height of helpfulness and proactiveness in these first few weeks of discovery (a broken socket here, a leaky faucet there).
No problem with the pets, either, so this time around we don’t have to pretend we don’t have any – this includes our future dog, which was included on the tenancy agreement despite not existing yet. Well, we’ll be getting a rescue, so it probably does exist… it just doesn’t know it’s going to be ours.
Tom’s got an easy commute into Bristol in our new car – all the trappings of grown up life, we have them – leaving me to get volunteering at Slimbridge again/start an allotment (handily accessed from a gate in our garden)/ingratiate myself into village life. Or, less wholesomely, buy a PS4 and never leave the house again. Or all of the above.
So, now that we’re settling into routines and stability for the first time in about five years, I hope I can return to blogging with a vengeance. My camera is currently acting up, so current events will be thin on the ground until I can get it fixed, but I have got about ten years of trips to write about. Watch this space.