September 23, 2012

My New Home

Hello all!
I am writing to you from my very new place of residence for the coming weeks. It's most different from Barcelona indeed. In fact, it's in the middle of nowhere... Shottenden. You know, Shottenden... Kent? Near Chilham? Not far from Canterbury? Have you heard of it? No? You haven't? I didn't think so.
Well as you can imagine, it is most beautiful here indeed. The cottage I am staying in is simply darling- tucked away down the narrowest lane with teetering hedges in a little hamlet that is merely a few houses and spilling orchards that are bursting with sweet rosy apples and green pears.
 There is a little garden and an inglenook fire with cast iron doors that look like cobwebs, set into an exposed brick fireplace. Leading through the kitchen, the cottage opens up into the garden where we are growing the last of the season's tiny tomatoes, an abundance of courgettes and baby beets and lots of fresh herbs. The kitchen still smells of cinnamon from the last batch of courgette muffins that were made and there is soon to be a spicy soup on the hob, piping with butternut squash from next door and laced with warming smoked paprika.
 I have six housemates in total. Vicki and Paul (the humans), Bear, Blythe and Buddy (the cats) and Bruce, the young and slightly troubled greyhound who is currently sprawled at my feet after a whole morning of running through the fields with him and trying to convince him not to steal the plump, red apples. Little Blythe came along with us, too... bounding through the brambles and sniffing at the blackberries, which I suspect I will be turning into a syrup to make mojitos. There's some Spanish in me yet!
I really can't emphasise enough how very different my life has suddenly become. While the sound of a cool autumnal breeze dancing through the back door is like a soothing lullably, I still haven't quite come to accept that not everything is on my doorstep or in my hands anymore. Want a pint of milk? Better get your wellies on and trudge down to the farmer's shop- a fair few fields away. Want some company? Bear the cat is an excellent conversationalist. She specialises in insects and woodland birds. Oh and the occasional field mouse. Talk about a life swap! From the bustling orchestra of Barcelona's streets to the total peace that is the countryside silence, punctuated by bird song, the occasional dog barking and the most beautiful sunrise...
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