A long walk in the country through beautiful woods and a farmer’s open field. A one-block walking trip to the Green to run my errands including: Salmon from the fishmonger. A deposit to the farmstand man for a turkey. No matter that he can’t understand why in the world I’d want one BEFORE Christmas. Mail some letters at the post office. Check out some books at the library. Then it’s home and a hot cup of tea.
Drop the boys with Alex’s Nana who graciously watches three sets of kiddos. An evening dinner with friends at Bagatti’s where each owner/host kisses me on both cheeks. Delightful gluten free pasta and even more delightful company. Hilarious rides home in the late hours full of screaching, laughing, and the sorts of jokes only old-friends really tell but new friends can still very much enjoy.
Sleepovers with warm cuddly boys while their daddy is away. Agitated almost seven year olds who finally curl up and pour their heart out with lonliness, and homesickness, and longings too heavy to bear. Sobbing and cuddling like he did when he was much smaller.
Spicy pumpkin cakes baked with helps from small hands. Yummy spicy smells and Christmas music blaring and copious cups of tea. Locking myself out of the house and running to the neighbors for a spare.
Fantastic fireworks experienced in bundle-up cold. Oo-ing and Ah-ing and delightful sparkly lights. Huge bonfires in the back ‘garden’ (not yard) with ‘jacket’ potatoes (not baked potatoes) and chili and mulled wine. Followed up by more cuddly sleepovers in Mama’s room.
Hurried breakfast and a uniformed Rememberance Day Parade. A friend's husband makes me emotional in his RAF uniform--recalling brothers also off fighting wars. Bridger marches proudly behind the band in his Cub Scout uniform. We are back at the Green. The local Vicar is leading a Rememberance Service. A woman is reading the names of Warlingham boys lost in the two Great Wars. A young girl in a school uniform places a poppy-wreath at the base of the memorial in the center of the Green.
I am full. Warm. Content. Included. Surrounded by love. And thankful beyond measure--in spite of my own homesick longings--for this village life we are leading.