Sunday, 26 June 2011


I have taken the farmer out to lunch today for his birthday. We only went about five miles down the road to The Friar's Head, which is a pub, a restaurant, a caravan park and a golf course.

Sitting there in the Orangery, where I have to say the meal and the service was excellent, I got to thinking about outings and how they had changed over the years.

There was a pub, where the pub customers were drinking and eating snack lunches, then there was the Orangery, where us middle-aged and elderly (all dressed up in our Sunday best - chaps in shirts and trousers, ladies in dresses or smart trousers and earrings, make-up etc.) and then outside on the patio the golfers and the caravanners in their shorts and T shirts, sandals, with children running around and playing in the warm sunshine. It was such a carefree occasion. And I realised just how laid back everybody is these days.

I thought back to my childhood days when hardly anyone had a car and where the outing took on great importance because it meant going either by train or by bus. Old photographs of my mother and father with me as a young girl at the seaside (usually Skegness, our nearest place) show my father in a jacket, shirt and tie and my mother wearing a hat!

There just weren't the leisure clothes available, and if there were then we probably couldn't afford them. Our annual choir outing from chapel took place in mid-summer and entailed a bus trip to either Scarborough, Bridlington, Cromer or Hunstanton (we did them in turn) and I well remember four of us rowing round Bridlington harbour in our best coats in the pouring rain.

But golly, how we enjoyed those outings; maybe because they were red letter days rather than every weekend. But isn't it lovely now how leisure clothes are worn all the time,for any occasion. No chaps seem to wear ties any more except for the most serious events. Newsreaders still wear ties but surely it is only a matter of time before they too go 'casual'.

I think maybe I am now too old to adopt 'casual' as I do find T shirts far too sloppy and irritating but I think that is a fault in me rather than in the design of the T shirt!

But to get back to our outing today. We both ate far too much and will not want anything else to eat today. It's a good job we only go out for such binges on anniversaries, birthdays etc. otherwise we would both be like balloons. As it is, we have both had an hour's sleep since we came back.


MorningAJ said...

Happy Birthday Farmer!

Have to adit I'm a t-shirt girl, but fancy ones with maybe a bit of lace at the neckline. Today's has a front pin-tuck panel at the top and some lace round the hem and sleeves.

I have to dress too smartly for work not to relax at the weekends! Glad you had a nice day.

Heather said...

Please pass birthday greetings to the Farmer for me Pat - his lunch outing sounds delicious. I am in two minds about today's casual dress and think it a shame that, even at quite formal occasions, there are those who don't seem to have bothered to dress smartly.
I wear casual clothes on a daily basis because I lead a casual life and have never been a follower of fashion. There doesn't seem to be a fashion to follow anymore anyway.
Do hope Attila the Hen will soon relent and allow her babies to be photographed.

Elizabeth said...

Happy Birthday to the Farmer.
Sounds an excellent lunch.
Yes, getting dressed up is much overrated though I sadly fear we might have aged-out of T-shirts (except under things!)
I imagine many hatters had to change professions when everyone gave up wearing them daily.....though wedding hats seem to be big (literally and metaphorically) in England.

An odd summer uniform for young male doctors/professionals in the US: light blue shirt/khaki trousers/ no jacket but
always a TIE.
Go figure--as they say here!

John said...

I well recall when men always got dressed up in suit and tie to go to town. And a smart cloth cap as well. These later became gardening- or farming-clothes as they became shabby. And ladies certainly never wore trousers!

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

Please send along my happiest of wishes to the Farmer on his birthday!! Although I am writing this in my most casual of clothes... I do admit to a love of fancy frocks!

And thanks for your get well wishes during my recent bout with bronchitis. That was decidedly no fun and I'm happy to be "back in the saddle" as my father used to say!

Anatoly said...

Happy Birthday Farmer!
It was a great day!

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ChrisJ said...

June is quite the month for birthdays! My husband's was yesterday. I went to school in Bridlington. When we took our boys back to visit a good number of years ago now, we used to go to the south side, then get the little row boat ferry back across to the north side , then go to Notriani's for a '99'.

missing moments said...

Such fun celebrating birthdays! I think getting dressed up is all overrated ... but then, I'm a casual kind of girl. So sometimes, dress up can be okay ... but on sometimes!

Dartford Warbler said...

Many Happy Returns to the Farmer!

I do enjoy wearing more casual clothes, but there seem to be degrees of casualness. At work, teaching, I wore smart trousers and co ordinated jackets, which was still a move away from the earlier edict of "skirts and dresses only".

Now, my days are mostly spent in very casual jeans and tops, which don`t mind getting dirty when I`m gardening or dealing with the animals. Getting dressed up means clean, newer jeans and a newer top! I hardly ever wear skirts and dresses now.

steven said...

a happy birthday wish to the farmer. it sounds like he had a great date! the clothing question is interesting because it's one of the many areas of life that you can look back over the centuries and see has come and gone in the specifics of casual and formal attire. i wear a tie a handful of times a year. there was a time when teachers wore them as a matter of course. now it's about finding a middle ground between appropriate dress and comfort. steven

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acornmoon said...

Happy Birthday Farmer, hope you enjoyed your day.

The Weaver of Grass said...

The farmer thanks you for your birthday wishes.

I guess we are all agreed that maybe how dressed up one gets has something to do with one's age - and also with how much dressing up we have to do inour jobs.

Thank you for commenting.