Last night I dreamt that somehow, I'd been convinced to move back down to Buckinghamshire for a slightly higher salary. I went along with it and pretended everything was fine until my dad started loading the plants into the car, whereupon I started crying and asking if it was too late to change my mind.
It's just as well that this was a dream, given my love of Northumberland and accompanying lack of desire ever to set foot in any part of the south-east ever again. I've had a surprisingly busy weekend, all as part of my initiative to not follow my instinct to sit in my house and mope, however tempting a prospect this may be. I did lots of walking yesterday and ended up picking more elderberries than I thought possible. I considered making a pie along with my elderberry vodka, but then I thought 'No. I shall have some vodka, AND some vodka'. It was exhausting to make because you have to remove the stems, of which there were millions. I believe the stems are mildly toxic, and poisoning myself by accident with home-made vodka is exactly the kind of stupid thing I'd do. Also, there were a LOT of spiders that I had to remove from the elderberries, as I do not think I would enjoy spider vodka.
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I also topped up my supply of blackberries (even though according to folk wisdom, it was a day too late to pick them because the devil wees on them or something) and made a PIE. I've had a slice and I thought it was perfectly edible, given it was my first ever attempt at a non-savoury pie. I gave my little neighbour Alastair a slice too and I'm concerned maybe my cooking has poisoned him.
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Today I was going to take things a bit easier due to Spinal Twinges. I took myself out for a meal at Barter Books as a special treat. It was DELICIOUS. Sadly it was really busy and the queue was going right past my table, meaning I was distracted by the chatter, but that wasn't really anybody's fault and it was still pleasant to sit there like one of those modern young people with my 'tablet device', enjoying 'free WiFi' and 'more food than is strictly necessary for lunch'. Pictured: rarebit with THRICE-COOKED CHIPS.
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Then I trundled off to an antiques fair, which I'd been to once before in Alnwick. I didn't stay for long this time because I found exactly what I was looking for.
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YES. I've been looking for a bleak painting of a U-Boat for literally years, and now I have an original, signed by the author, for a mere £8. I just need the elusive model ship (I don't know exactly what I want, but I'll know it when I see it, hence my trolling of car boot sales and antiques fairs) to complete my nautical floor.
I got all this done (along with adequate amount of cleaning) by 2pm, so managed to fit in a bit of gardening. I should've said a 'spot' of gardening, just to make that sentence that bit more middle class. My cabbages and garlic seem to be doing well and I spaced out the carrots. I still have no idea about when to do what in my garden and will cheerfully admit that I'm quite ignorant, but I think it's best to learn these things by doing. I'm not expecting to grow giant crops- in fact, it's always a pleasant surprise to me when I grow anything at all. There is much to be said for lowering one's expectations in the pursuit of happiness.

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