The view from the farm

Turning the page, not looking back

Greetings from our cottage on the farm. I’m sitting in the kitchen on Saturday afternoon writing this, looking out on to a very grey and misty day!

We’re delighted to be here. This is our third holiday let. Bamber settled in straight away and adopted the rug in front of the wood burner as his own. I can hear him snoring!

It’s a very cosy cottage with, normally, great views on to the countryside. We managed a walk around the two fields yesterday before today’s damp and dismal weather set in. Very little visibility today. Sadly, there is no livestock apart from hens but there are sheep in an adjacent field - well, there would be if Chris didn’t shout come by to them and send them running off! There may be cows in the other adjacent field. I need to investigate.

We’re only a few miles from our new house and our favourite farm shop.

Apart from prepping for our relocation, cleaning the apartment and packing the car, subsequently unpacking and finding a home for everything, I don’t feel like I’ve done much this past week. We had a couple of unsuccessful attempts to collect the mail. My beloved Post Restante facility, a leftover from the glory days of the grand tour failed abysmally. I’m so disappointed but at least I can say I was able to access it for a few weeks.

I discovered, this morning, that the Post Office had declined our mail and returned it to the sorting office. Apparently they had decided that they don’t do Post Restante any more. RIP Post Restante. My delight at having our mail found was tinged with a little sadness.

Today I’ve been writing Pigeons which make me feel like Jane Austen writing missives to her friends and acquaintances, then sealing them. She, with a wax seal, me with a pre-gummed stamp. I just need to find the local postbox now for the fantasy to be complete.

We did have a visit, on Tuesday, to Poynton’s Pastimes, a newsagent/model railway/jigsaw/puzzle stockist. Their range of magazines was extensive with many more unusual titles. In the same shopping precinct were a few open shops - butcher, baker and greengrocer so I stocked up while Chris took a call from a fellow professional woodturner who wanted to pick his brain about teaching a blind student. Chris is missing his woodturning and his first job will be to set up his new workshop when we move into the new house.

Nick Shelton, known as the connected introvert, is the author of An Introvert's Guide to World Domination. It's the story of how Nick, a dyed in the wool introvert, learned to harness his unique personal style and make it work for him.

I was 47 when I truly understood what it meant to be an introvert and I could have done with this book earlier in my life. I loved this conversation and the journey Nick has taken to create his own network and do some extraordinary things. 

Our conversation will challenge your ideas about what you can achieve as an introvert  and help you have experiences you might never have thought possible.

Click here to listen

This is the final episode of the current season. I’ll be interviewing guests again once we move into the new house but intend to fill in the gap with a slightly different series.

I can’t remember if I’ve mentioned this before … but I don’t miss our old house at all. I’ve not given it a second thought. We’ve just slotted into life in Derbyshire as if we’ve been here for years. Every time I put on my boots, hat and coat, I feel right at home. I walk down lanes, through fields and mud, gaze out at the landscape and think, this is what I was always meant to do.

For as long as I can remember, I’ve loved being outside. When I lived in Manchester, Heaton Park was my sanctuary. I would explore for hours at the weekend, there from the crack of dawn and, thanks to some pointers from Dave, one of the wardens, I found lots of hidden gems off the beaten track.

I missed Heaton Park when we moved to Chorley but discovered a leg of the canal that I enjoyed photographing, and Worden, Cuerden and Astley Parks. But none of them had the same wilderness element that I’d connected with in Heaton Park.

While our efforts at packing the car haven’t improved much (it was fortunate that this last move only involved a five minute car ride up the road), and we still seem to have far too much stuff, we’ve not been fazed by this new chapter. Yes, Chris has more of a challenge on his hands to adapt to each new place and master the layout, but he’s done that with aplomb.

We both have a sense of being where we’re meant to be, a new future unfolding and many adventures to come.

Until next time, thank you for reading.