Paid, yay! daffodilblonde
and I went to Winton yesterday, which we do when the soul-destroying blanditude of the much handier Castlepoint Shopping Centre
gets too much for us to bear. Winton is an old-fashioned little down-at-heel high street, complete with charity shops ranging from posh to manky, actual family butchers, a discount health food store, a ship's chandler, cafes whose menus aren't dictated by a Head Office in a Milton Keynes business park and even a fishmonger.
It's dying, of course; more boarded-up windows than actual shopfronts, and parking there is a huge pain in the arse to boot, but Mum and I don't care. The only reason I don't do all my shopping there is that, faced with actual flesh-and-blood shops, I can never control my overspending. Still, I feel a lot better about spending £6 on books when I can bring home a whole carrier-bag full for that price. And new dog and cat toys don't count as luxuries, though possibly the creme-patissiere-filled brioche did. But it was cheap. What the hell, you can't take it with you.
The filthy oppressive grey damp heat that's been giving me a headache all week also finally broke; not a storm, but a tender English summer rain gradually gathering strength from yesterday's misty drizzle into today's steady trickle. It's like a cool breeze blowing through the soul. So the dogs and I went to Big Park to test drive the new dog toys in the wet. Just an ordinary everyday dog-walk; only transmuted, somehow into one of those shining days that stay with you forever.
I filmed a little bit of it, because I love filming my dogs. But none of you need to look; it's much the same as yesterday's vid except in a different park and with new rubber rings instead of balls. I film and upload them for myself; even now, the same day it happened, watching them on screen makes me smile. Spike will be six soon, Squish will be five. One day they'll be grey and arthritic and slow; one day they'll be gone, but - assuming I actually live past losing Spike, which I don't much fancy - at least I'll still have this. That's the only reason I do it. So you don't need to click the cut. Nothing under there but a slice of my heart, being pressed for posterity.
Also, randomly, nothing in the world smells better than freshly-rained-on elderflowers. If someone would bottle that, I would smell of nothing else for the rest of my natural life. ( Two pics and a non-embedded video link )