Fun, from start to finish

That was my Friday.



Friends telephoned earlier in the week to ask if we'd like to join them for lunch and a demonstration of planting ideas for summer pots.  Finding that their idea fitted nicely with plans we already had in place for later in the day, we didn't hesitate; of course we were up for some fun!  It was a glorious morning as we drove through the Cotswolds to meet them for lunch at The Plough and being there a little early meant that we had time to slip into Daylesford for a loaf of bread (or two).  For some reason, I wasn't quite in photo mood, so you'll have to imagine the scenes here and there and simply believe me when I tell you about our great lunch.



From there, it's a shortish drive to Whichford  through a maze of narrow lanes which always demand utter reliance on the satnav.  The villages in this part of the country are lovely - thatch roof cottages, delightful country churches and the most stunning views across open fields and yes, it was one of those days when it was good to be alive and able to appreciate just being here.



The demonstration was by Derry Watkins of Special Plants.  Being neither passionate about plants or very knowledgeable about any aspect of gardening, my hero and I loved her presentation. Surely it must have been as fascinating for those around us who did know about these things as it was for us, who didn't!  suffice to say, Derry inspired us to bring home a few plants for our pots and to make a special effort this year to be a little more imaginative than we usually are!



Needless to say, the pots in the Whichford garden were extraordinarily lovely and the tulips absolutely amazing.  After a cup of tea in the midst of these beauties, we left our friends perusing the pots and my hero and I headed northwards, towards Birmingham.

We had tickets and our favourite seats awaited us in Symphony Hall.



On the programme were two Harold Lloyd Silent Classics - both with live accompaniment from the CBSO.  Carl Davis has composed music for a vast number of silent movies and last night was to be the premiere performance of his score for The Freshman .  There for this special occasion was none other than Harold Lloyd's granddaughter, Suzanne Lloyd.



First was High and Dizzy which was excruciating to watch at times, especially in the scene above where Harold walks drunkenly along that narrow ledge.  Especially interesting was that Suzanne Lloyd had explained before the film began, that the heroine was none other than her Grandmother, Mildred Davis.  Imagine being able to watch your Grandparents walking along that high ledge like that!



The second film, The Freshman tells the story of "a collegiate patsy who finds love and unwittingly becomes a football hero".  I found this one rather more difficult to watch since it's a comedy of embarrassment from beginning to end and though of course all works out well, there are some awkward moments!


We left Birmingham just gone 10pm as things were just kicking off in Broad Street.  The NAHT (Headteachers) conference was on at the Convention Centre and as we drove home, I wondered if those tight knit little groups who'd been having deep and meaningful conversations outside Starbucks earlier were now dancing the night away...




Staying Calm

Buds and blooms