Thursday, October 20, 2011

Reunited in music and friendship

Last weekend was least that's what my children would have said, but it really was.

On Friday evening, I flew to Bristol, picked up a nifty VW Polo and drove to the charming, gorgeous and fondly remembered village of Charmouth. on the Dorset coast. There I was greeted by my long lost school chum, the still beautiful and elegant Sarah, who has been living in Botswana for the last 35 years. She has barely changed at all.

My friend always had more than her fair share of charm, wit and humour to go with her dainty but refined loveliness. She still has it all in bucket loads, and it was just wonderful to see her again. The house in Charmouth belongs to her mother, who is an amazing (and I do mean this) 86 year old bundle of energy and dynamism. Her days put mine to shame. She rises at six, takes here (shamefully) lazy thirty-something neighbours' dogs for a walk, then bakes scones and cakes for all the visitors she has on a daily basis, not to mention anyone else she feels like giving them away to. She belongs to the choir, does flowers for the church, works as a volunteer in the Heritage centre and visits old people (!) who need comfort. I get exhausted just imagining it all.

Apart from this, she has a self contained flat beneath her house that she lets to holiday makers, and every weekend - more or less- is a changeover. Now I know where her daughter gets her boundless energy from. Sarah, herself is an early riser in Botswana. She rides every day from about 5 a.m. till late morning, when it then becomes too hot to do more. All I could think was!

But this was just the start of my weekend, which proved to be a major trip down memory lane....but more of that later. For the moment, here are a few photos of my lovely friend on my beloved Dorset coast




Dale said...

Wow, Sarah's mum sounds like quite the dynamo!
Isn't it wonderful reuniting with old friends?
I took a holiday last month to visit an old friend in Saskatchewan. It was nice to visit old haunts - it makes me appreciate even more the mountains where I live now! However, the prairies have a beauty of their own, as well.
What does Sarah do that she rises at dawn and what does she ride?
Fabulous photos and what pretty country surrounds Dorset!


Anne-Marie said...

Lovely to meet old fiends, isn't it? I cannot believe her mum is 86. That is not the photo of an 86 year old! I want her secrets!

June's World said...

sounds amazing Val. And your photos here are beautiful, as are the ones in them!!


ginab said...

I'm completely knackered! you are right that is one super mum.

Lovely blue skies there in Dorset. Wonderful to see two school chums smiling. Must take you back.

Magical indeed.

String said...

Hey really sad you didn't let us know you were out here Val! x

VallyP said...

Dale, seeing Sarah and her mum was something I never thought would happen as I had lost touch with her, and nothing I did to find her seemed to bear results. It was just luck that the madrigal choir reunion brought us together after 40 years. It's a shame that all the time I was in South Africa, I didn't know she was just over the border in Botswana. As far as the riding goes, she and her husband have their own business, but she has ridden her whole life, and now rides and schools horses for other people. She has to do it very early because it is so hot there. By 11.00 it is dangerous to be working outside. xx

Anne Marie, so do I, so do I! xx

Grace, thank you so much :) xx

Gina, super mum is absolutely what she is, but she tells me everyone is so kind to her, it is the least she can do. I rather think it's a case of chicken or egg!

String, I am so very sorry! I would have loved to come and visit you. But there are two reasons I didn't mention it before - feeble reasons, I know, but still true. The first is that I knew it would just be a flying visit. I went to sing in our madrigal group 40 year reunion, so nearly all Saturday was spent with my old school friends singing and tripping down memory lane. Then on Sunday, I had to leave at lunchtime to get back to Bristol in time for my flight home. The second reason is that Koos didn't want me to come and see you without him! Seriously! He wants us to make a special trip over to re-explore Dorset and to come and see you. Even so, I really wish I'd been able to.

I'll be posting more about the reunion next time.

A Heron's View said...

How lucky you are to have visited Charmouth, such a tranquil place according to my memory. Your friends mother looks to be a veritable dynamo & I bet her pastry is delicious.
Next time you are airborne bribe the pilot to land in Dublin :)

June's World said...

wish I could say I had such a long time friend, in time, I shall say the same for you, and my close blogpals. xx

Fran said...

It looks like you had a great time. I wish I had half the energy of your friend's mum, perhaps she could bottle the secret and pass it on to us!

VallyP said...

Thank you, Mel, Grace and Fran! I'm going to be posting more about this today, but I feel terrible as I am not being a very good return blogger at the moment. I promise I will get round to it soon. Love to you all