Wednesday, 4 August 2010


I am heading to the countryside. As we know, I fear the countryside and view it as a dark, violent place full of decomposing creatures, limited shopping opportunities and incest. See here, where I serenaded it in the style of Dr Seuss. Or last year's dead newt and rotting carcass extravaganza. Not to mention the cruel absence of broadband. But go I must, to rescue my children from their continued enslavement in my father's vegetable garden, their tiny fingers worn down with carrot picking (or something. For all I know carrots run around the fields kicking up their tiny carrot legs and grazing on, I dunno, silage or something). God only knows what has happened to the dog, it is probably catatonic with terror after accidentally sighting a sheep and certainly catatonic with terror after spending 2 days with my father, who I once saw pour a pint of beer over a cat that was annoying him, and who used to keep his chickens in a potato sack when they were being naughty.

"It's sort of drizzling" warns my stepmother. Forgetting entirely what a British summer involves and fresh from the tropical paradise that is Belgium, I have sent the children away with nothing but shorts and t-shirts. I myself have nothing warmer or more practical than a pair of Fitflops and I sense a trip to the dizzying retail paradise that is Shipston on Stour coming on (the Coop, Somerfield, and a gigantic hardware shop filled with exciting multi-purpose chemicals for killing both weeds and all your immediate family). Usually within hours of arrival I have reverted to my fourteen year old self, sullenly curled up on a window ledge with a family sized sponge cake, refusing all attempts to make me leave the house, but maybe I can persuade the children to go to the Cotswold Wildlife Park where last year a goat tried to eat my whole face. You get your entertainment where you can in the countryside, especially if you can't afford the version Lady Bamford is trying to sell you (I think she has custody of the only espresso machine in Gloucestershire, but short of selling her a child, I can't afford to test it out).

I will be back on Saturday at the latest, possibly before then if I can construct an internet connection out of twigs and baby badger corpses. In the meantime I would like you all to think positive thoughts of gambolling lambs and spring flowers (I have a suspicion this is not seasonally appropriate, but what would I know) rather than spilled entrails and dung.


Invader_Stu said...

I used to like the country side but after reading your description I think I'm a little scared of it now.

Try to come back alive. Take bug spray and avoid anyone playing a banjo.

karen said...

Hmmm ... there's a Torchwood episode called 'Countrycide' and it sounds remarkably like your version.

Christina @ Fashion's Most Wanted said...

I think your version's spot on. There are a LOT of dead things.

I turn into a monosyllabic fourteen year old when I visit my father too. Thank God it's not just me. Your blog cheers up my day! xx

hairyfarmerfamily said...

Oh, you poor dear girl. If Shipston is your prospective closest and best, then you ARE in trouble!

I am not too far away if you need a rescue, an excuse to escape for proper coffee, or simply a friendly wifi!

C/Kalgon said...

Heaven knows you can always consult the entrails to get a sense of whether or not your immediate family will kill you with pesticide. You takes your oracles where you finds 'em.

the polish chick said...

how *exactly* can chickens be naughty? i am consumed with curiosity.

Margaret said...

That sounds horrifying and about as much of a holiday as Vacation Bible Camp.

Betty M said...

If it's any consolation it is poring with rain in London. I'd take HHF up on her offer - her cake always gets rave reviews.

Em said...

I'm with you on the countryside. Plus it smells funny and your shoes get dirty.

You must rescue the Weepette as soon as possible. I imagine him quivering in a corner somewhere next to a sack full of chickens.

Mancunian Mum said...

Well, at least you're looking forward to it, eh? ;)

Lisa said...

I am shocked, shocked, I tell you that you won't be wearing tweed.

frau antje said...

First saw the Prop. 8 ruling in your twitter comments. Perhaps the U.S. will enter the 21st century in less time than it takes to get a dishwasher sorted in Holland. Thanks.

kath said...

oh dear. coop and somerfield have merged. thus 50% of your shopping possibilities are gone.

Sensible Footwear said...

I heard someone say that the countryside was a nice place to visit but they wouldn't want to live there - the the days can seem very long.

mountainear said...

Shipston hasn't changed much then? It always was at least 30 years behind the rest of the world.

puncturedbicycle said...

If Kath is right and your Somerfield/Coop shopping possibilities are halved, that can only be a good thing.

Alison Cross said...

I love the countryside, but just as long as no-one tramps it into my carpets on their boots.

I particularly like looking at it as the car speeds through it on its way to Civilisation (ie SHOPS!)

Dog will be fine. Children will have forgotten your very existence.

Ali x

Alice said...

Oh God...The Countryside...the British Countryside. I'm headed there myself, I suspect for a similar experience to yours.
Complete with reverting to teenage behaviour and refusing to Go For A Walk. My destination is currently a balmy 13C with "heavy rain" according to the BBC. Woo.

Madame DeFarge said...

I fear for the safety of the countryside. Let us hope you all emerge unscathed.

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