Friday, 1 August 2008

Summer groove ...

I have slowly and gently slipped into the summer groove this week and succumbed to the pace of these sultry days, finding a daily siesta a necessity....
This could be my subtle way of bringing Tuscany to my doorstep as this year we are firmly grounded and will not be venturing far afield other than the threshold of Dartmoor for two days later this month..
In no way am I complaining.. it is quite liberating not to have a valid passport and I relish the few day trips that we have promised ourselves after our D.I.Y agenda is complete. Dear long suffering Mr Custard say D.I.Y translates as "Don't involve yourself " and has kicked against my regime of de-cluttering and painting our utility yard that has been sadly neglected for the last two years.. along with other disaster areas around the home.
However.. this is meant to be a holiday and all work and no play is pretty dull so we jumped at the invitation to go and visit my eldest brother who is presently ensconced in Henley on Thames and we set off on a 24 hour expedition to renew acquaintance as it is over a year since we last met up and it was also an opportunity for me to revisit some of my old student haunts from the 1970's when I was an art student in Reading and Maidenhead.
Henley upon Thames is a very pretty town in Oxfordshire on the edge of the beautiful Chiltern hills and has much charm and character which I was relieved to see had not been spoilt over the years.We arrived in the early evening and had a quick trot around the town to visit addresses that had been significant to me in my impressionable youth..
First stop was the house where I met my first 'Bookbinder' and it was here that the seeds of my career in bookbinding were sown..
The riverside in Henley has always been a great place for people watching and never more so than during regatta week that took place last month..
This person in particular caught my attention...
We then hotfooted it to Henley Business Management College where my brother ( the smart one in the family) is currently employed and commutes from Switzerland every week!

We had been invited to a performance of Much ado about Nothing.. in the grounds of the college..
It was a perfect outdoor setting in a comfortable ambient temperature to sit and be entertained by these fine thespians..

This is what they looked like after my second glass of wine...


I must confess that the steady flow of people , boats and animal traffic along the stretch of river caught much of my attention and I soaked up the scenery of a perfect summer eve along the river Thames....The evening was rounded off in the salubrious.. Hotel du Vin where we were the last to leave at midnight having spent some sacred time with my brother, catching up with the events of the last year and enjoying the best of the British countryside..
I just need a day to recover from all this unfamiliar hedonism.... not a spring chicken any more!

18 comments:

A Saucerful Of Secrets said...

Hi Sweetie, looks like you had a great time in Henley.Great to catch up with your brother, you make me feel guilty now, haven't seen mine in three years!Hey-Ho.....Glad you've had a good week, mine was bizarre!!I will blog about it soon,Happy DIYing, Annie x

My Wonderful Men said...

I've enjoyed just visiting your blog it takes me to another place. Thank you for sharing.

Sal said...

Daily siesta...now there's a thing!
I must do the same.
I love outdoor theatre too.
Looks like you had a great time;-)

Ragged Roses said...

Hello Mrs Custard, lovely to hear that I am not the only one in this country without a valid passport! Good to hear of daily siestas and people watching, now who is that man I wonder? No mean feat being able to take a photograph at all after a second glass of wine, my camera would have fallen from my hand by then! How goes the DIY?
Mxxx

Vanessa said...

Looks like you had a great summer's evening even if you were people spotting instead of watching the play! I have to say I am the greatest people spotter in the world. I used to have a branch at Leeds Train station, it was the best place in the world for people spotting, I even saw a few celebs from Emmerdale!

Have a good weekend.

Vanessa x

Pipany said...

Just lovely, though I almost clicked off at your opening bit - what sun? What siesta? Cornwall has rained non-stop for over a week!!!! Oops, turning into bitter old bat here xx

Michael House said...

I was also wondering about that sunshine reference, as, like the last commenter, I have been experiencing the wet of Cornwall!! In fairness to this wonderful part of the country though, it is sunny just now. I know Henley a little, as my neice lives there and my husband grew up in that area. Lovely place, as you say, unspoilt. Great photos. Vanessa, x

Vintage Amethyst said...

OOoh looks like you had a fab time! I love out door performances in the summer.
Love Alison
x

LOUISE said...

Hi Michele, Henley on Thames looks like a very pretty place to visit and a nice invitation from your brother to go visit the performance. You must have really enjoyed revisiting old haunts from the early days too. I hope you get to spend some more days out over the holidays. x

Dana Jones said...

Oh it looks like a wonderful summer vaca!

This Vintage Life... said...

Who needs Tuscany anyway! Sometimes we don't appreciate whats on our own dorsteps do we? (says she that hasn't made it to the beach yet this year - 6 mls away)
There's plenty of long dark evenings to come for doing diy...put your feet up and just enjoy I say.
Looks like you had a fab trip.
Deb x

Simone said...

It looks like you had a wonderful time. I am living my life through other people's blogs at the moment and yearn for a nice day out somewhere with someone who would appreciate it!

Garden Girl said...

wow, what a great day! I love Henley, and in particular Hotel Du Vin, did you eat in the dining room amongst all the naked lady paintings??!!
We had dinner there a couple of years ago with my brother and his wife, that was quite a wine fuelled occassion as well, I seem to remember!x

OhSoVintage said...

What a wonderful time you had there. We visited Henley in June when we had an evening river trip. I think that must be the bridge you have to make sure you are not on the top deck when cruising underneath it.
Ruth x

BeachysCapeCodCupboard said...

"Unfamiliar hedonism"! You made me chuckle! I think I've sprung so far I've omitted the word "hedonism" from my vocabulary altogether! lol Looks like you had a fabulous time, and what a nice souvenir you found for yourself! heehee

Kitschen Pink said...

Performance venue looks wonderful! how annoying that they got themselves all out of focus as the evening continued! t.x

Things Hand Made said...

Sounds a lovely evening.

lavenderhouse said...

Hi

Just to confirm I would like to book a table - Lavenderhouse - thank you love Emma x