We were all quite sad when Veronica - who started our bereavement group - now known as the friendship group announced the she and her new husband Peter were going to up sticks and find a house in the Torbay area. We cheered somewhat when she insisted that as soon as they had settled in - give or take a few dozen cardboard boxes we should all go down and spend the day with them.
The logistics were complicated - how many cars - who would - could drive, who would go with whom etc. In the end Patsy's dog being in season, illness and prior engagements whittled us down to four.
Elaine had always insisted on driving as she knows the route (her version ) like the back of her hand
and Chrissie, James and I gratefully accepted her noble offer.
The drive would not be easy as Dunster was closed owing to controversial alterations to the cobbles in the street so all the rush hour traffic were using the villages - creating havoc. However Elaine is a doughty driver and was determined to use her favourite route so there was much braking, reversing and sharp intakes of breath- but we finally got through the mayhem.
James and I were sitting in the back as Chrissie is prone to travel sickness and by now James was feeling queasy so we stopped here whilst he had a walk around.
Off we went again.
At last a glimpse of the dazzling sea
Miraculously we finally found the lane off a lane where Veronica and Peter now live. They are surrounded by these rollocking hills and we had tea/coffee and homemade, wafer - thin shortbread alfresco.
Veronica's new kitchen. James did take his cap off eventually.
It is a super kitchen - a fridge like a garage but V said they regretted the area where James is standing as it becomes a bottle neck.
The house is like a Tardis - once inside it goes on an on.
Elaine the fearless driver with V's dog.
James and Peter in the back garden
Looking down at the back of the house. There is more building work still to be done so that Peter can have his own office.
I was told this was not mimosa. Looks like mimosa to me:)
Children had lived here previously and this was their fort.
See what I mean about the hills?
Then there was lunch - heavenly soup, a scrumptious chicken dish and you can just see the bread and butter pudding which was so light it trembled.
After coffee and when we were able to be mobile again we set off to drive down to the beach - down a perpendicular lane.
We were all feeling somnolent but the air was crisp and reviving and we did quite a bit of waddling.
So peaceful - far from the madding crowd.
Back at the house we had tea with three different cakes and then reluctantly said a fond farewell with lots of hugs.
Elaine was a star and delivered us to our doors - with the exception of James who nipped through the ginnel from my house. It was a special day.