Easter is over - and with it the pleasant weather. Today it is pouring with rain. So when friend W and I went into our little market town, as we often do on a Tuesday morning, it was to find that the world and his wife had come into town. This often happens up here when there is a wet day: visitors to the area explore the countryside and walk the hills and then, when it rains, they come into town to have a look round.
Finding a Parking spot was rather more difficult than usual, but we did manage to get our favourite spot in the Coffee Shop - in the bay window, looking out over the Market Square so that we could watch The World and his Wife go past.
The area seems busier than usual already this year. On July 5th, which is a Saturday, the Great Britain leg of the Tour de France comes straight through the middle of our town. I understand that all available accommodation has been booked up for months - hotels, B and B's, Caravan Parks and the like - and all the shops are already full of memorabilia - mugs, stickers, fridge magnets, tea towels, wall posters - local businesses are going all out to make as much profit as possible from the Tour. Good Luck to them I say.
I fully expect the whole thing to flash through the town and be gone, outriders, followers, tourists and the lot so there will be limited time to catch anybody to spend money in the town.
Most of the locals, certainly in our village which, rumour has it, is to be used as a Parking Spot, intend to spend the day closeted at home, missing it all.
I am now back home, the stove is lit and burning brightly, I am re-reading Vita Sackville-West's 'Twelve Days', which is about her trekking through the Persian Mountains on a mule in 1927. She was certainly intrepid!