What a wonderful, booky weekend. Interspersed with strange, unconnected reunions of the best kind, there was a lot of opportunity to read. Phew. Thought I was going to have to rename the blog.
On Saturday, we returned to the Midlands en famille where we had a chance to review the books we had borrowed from my hometown library 3 weeks ago. Monkeyface still loves Foxly’s Feast, anything Meg and Mog related, as well as I’m Sure I Saw a Dinosaur.
Yesterday, I got to meet up with my oldest, dearest friend, Uncle Dabid, in the beautiful surroundings of Conkers, in the National Forest.
It was cold and damp, but we were wrapped up and warmed by the lovely surroundings. My best friend bought with him another gorgeous gem o
f a book that came in very useful later, when dining with other people’s older little bookworms: Mixed Up Fairy Tales by Hilary Robinson and Nick Sharratt.
Last night we headed to a little village pub kind enough to allow kids in the bar in order to meet with a work colleague of yore who has relocated some 5 miles from my hometown. Cue Midlanders muttering that “kids should be in bed” – which to be fair, I would probably have ranted over my gin and tonic myself before I had one and had no hope of getting her to bed before 830, myself. We met his lovely, comely wife and his genuinely adorable, photogenic kids who were extraordinarily tolerant of a less than benign two year old. His four year old essentially enlisted Monkeyface to pitch up with him: thereafter she more or less dutifully followed him on his voyage of pub discovery via chocolate ice-cream. They had the astonishing sweet-heartedness to bring with them a stockpile of their favourite books to show her, most of which our pathetic early foray meant we had yet to discover. We nursed our warming alcoholic beverages against the bone-freezing fog and mist outside, through which we could make out the beautiful, twinkly lights of the trees in the garden. How often, seriously, do you get to drink lovely wine in a three hundred year old coaching inn, whilst simultaneously reading new books with your toddler? In those few hours, not only was I treated to my first sight of my daughter bonding with another child – in and of itself magical – but some other contenders were added to the must-haves for the already creaking book-shelves: