Saturday, July 11, 2009

Saturday Morning Hereabouts

In the weeks leading up to our move, I read a book that a friend from church had recommended and then loaned to me a while back: Wife in the North by Judith O'Reilly. It's no exaggeration to say that reading her story had a massively positive impact on my mental and emotional sanity, and I'm so glad I picked it up when I did because it turns out that was exactly the time I needed it most! Told through a series of blog posts, the book chronicles her inner journey during the first year she and her family moved from London to Northumberland. She describes the emotions of that transition with such depth and precision that, even though our own transition had different elements, the flavor was the same. And I found that profoundly comforting.

After reading the book -- much of it quite literally pee-yourself-hilarious and some of it downright heart-rending -- I went looking for the blog itself. It's great reading, especially her comments on current affairs, but I missed being able to keep going. You know -- in the book, you can follow her experience through the weeks and months just by turning the page. On the blog, though, when there's a lull in her posting, there's (obviously) nothing new to read. Which is disappointing because she's so gifted! Reading what she writes feels like listening to the thoughts in my own head -- well, if I was clever, witty and English, that is. Okay, so it's probably more accurate to say that reading what she writes feels like listening to the thoughts of a clever, witty, English friend. (I sooooo urge you to get her book!)

Who knows what Judith O'Reilly has going on in her life that keeps her from blogging at the moment -- real life with her family, perhaps! But I've been feeling guilty about not posting regularly myself. Not that I have as wide an audience as she does, and not that what I have to say is as interesting. (Although I do understand how important it can be to unplug and regroup.) Anyway, in an effort to post more often, I'm going to try to write small snippets, and post more pictures, of our everyday goings-on.

Today, for example, was Saturday. And since moving here, one of our favorite things to do on Saturday mornings is to climb a humongous hill nearby, a National Trust property that gives amazing views from the top. Every time we do it, I look down and can't believe we live here!

This morning, on the uphill climb, the kids and I came across two of these amazing creatures:

Roman snails! They're not indigenous to England but were brought here by the Romans (to eat). They're a protected species now -- its illegal to collect them, sell them or harm them in any way. They like the woods and chalk, so they're not an uncommon sight on and around the hill.

This will give you a better idea of how huge this guy really was:

Here's to Saturdays! And here's to getting out in nature, exploring the incredible beauty all around us and enjoying the view.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Love this! Glad you guys are doing well! xo Oink n NC