A morning not to be wasted, in this wonderful Indian summer so many of us are experiencing. We decided to go for one our favourite drives in the Cotswolds, which are particularly lovely just now.
We like to go on a circular route, which - for those of you who know and love these places - is by way of Winchcombe, Broadway, and Stow-on-the-Wold, then home past Bourton-on-the-Water and the Dowdeswell reservoir. It is a great pleasure to have within easy access this perfect mixture of glorious countryside and beautiful buildings for which the area is renowned.
Most of the buildings are of the classic golden limestone of the area, but there are also many cottages of thatched and timber-framed construction. Many a time we have seen little groups of Japanese tourists staring at the scene before them, looking as though they have died and gone to Heaven.
The colours of the trees today ranged from their full summer green, through the shades of yellow and orange, to bright russet. Some of the fields still have their crops in place; others have been harvested, with only the stubble remaining, and are scattered with great cylindrical hay-bales awaiting transfer into the barns. Add to the mix the warm brown soil of the fields which have already been ploughed, and the vivid green grass of the fields that are set aside or used for grazing, and we had a perfect rural patchwork to enjoy.
We had just got out of the car in Broadway, when I bumped into a person I had never met before, but whose face was so familiar that I overcame my shyness and approached her. It was the famous Catholic blogger, Mrs Jackie Parkes! We had a very pleasant little conversation before going our separate ways. I am delighted to report how well she looked. I'm looking forward to reading her account of her adventures.