A Perfect Moment: Feet in socks on the dashboard, window open, wind-blown hair stuck to lips, blue sky mottled with cotton wool fluff, music blaring. A road on top of the world peers down on the patchwork delights of Dorset green and the sea beyond.
I am in the front of the car, a rare treat as journeys with children require me to reside in the back, muslins at the ready to catch the inevitable vomit from a travel sick prone toddler. But not today, today we are a couple not a family, we have a precious 24 hour window of just us-ness.
I got us lost, my map blindness leading us a merry dance in the wrong direction, and then we circled our destination in one way hell. Frustration was relieved by the sudden appearance of a landmark remembered from the hastily read directions, and we are there.
Our hotel room has an enormous window overlooking the cathedral. It is a lovely, quirky room with a gorgeous roll topped bath tucked to one side. They have left a welcome card complete with birthday wishes, a nice touch which is appreciated.
We stumble out to explore a new town, finding a record store to pass half an hour flicking through vinyl nostalgia. A stroll by the river, then back to town where we eat pizzas in peace, no rushing to forestall boredom of small people, no haste driven indigestion.
A walk through the streets leads to us spying a young punk in full plumage loitering outside an arts centre. We can hear the distant sound of live music so invite ourselves to investigate, and take in the homemade t-shirts of a band having noisy fun.
Then down an alley, and down, down stairs to an underground bar wallpapered with the singles of our youth. It suits us, we feel at home , drinks are consumed and future plans imagined and hoped for.
Back to our hotel where alcohol loosened eyes see a face in the grand cathedral. It is aghast. It is still aghast in the morning, we cannot undiscover its emotional state now we have seen it. I am sure it wasn’t us who upset it’s delicate temperament.
Waking too early with no need, I snooze through a burble of radio 4 until the need for coffee and painkillers outweighs the desire to stay lying down.
A browse in a bookshop, then a hunt for a gallery to see whether art seen only on a screen is as captivating in reality, and it is so much more so, textures and vibrancy that no LCD can replicate properly. I will own one, but which? I need to ponder and visit again before plucking one to be looked at daily for many years.
The drive home quieter, the back seat loaded with the days purchases of books and crumbly fudge, gifts that demonstrate to the children that we were still thinking of them while paradoxically enjoying them not being there. Then finally, key in door, stairs climbed, back to the faces of my small (and big) people. I missed them, it is good to be home, but it was oh so good to have twenty-four hours of being two people in love without the labels of Mummy and Daddy in tow.
How was your weekend?
Love Miss Cisco XXX