Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Jim.

It is impossible not to become attached to some people.
They start off as customers, ordering a couple of coffees and passing the time of day.
Then one day they tell you what their favourite cake is, or say what they had last time or say something about having something different, or sitting somewhere different and you realise that, actually, they come quite often. They are, in a word, regulars.
Next time when they arrive they might greet me by name.
They always boost my spirits, always make me feel I'm doing something right, always reassure me that there are some truly lovely people in the world who ask for very little and give a great deal.
Over the last eight years (yes that's how long it's been) I have had the great joy of sharing a little bit of life with quite a few "regulars".
If I am allowed a favourite then it would have to be Jim.
Jim "americano with hot milk and a slice of lemon drizzle" Grant who celebrated his 90th birthday a couple of years ago at the tearooms with a family tea.
Jim, father of three, always accompanied by one or more of his kids, two of whom retired last year. Jim who, when we closed last season for the winter, brought us a box of chocolates to say thank you and then emailed me in late November saying he was looking out of his window on a grey day dreaming of Spring and his next visit.
Jim, who died on Boxing Day, aged 92.
A few years ago he walked around the garden with one of his daughters. When they reached the raised area above the former tennis court he stopped and looked back at the tearoom building.
"You can sprinkle me here, if you like," he told her, "I'd be happy here."
Today Martin, Lesley, Cathy and Bob brought Jim's ashes and sprinkled him liberally, laughing as the wind made him difficult to control, scattered him at the base of trees and among the fallen leaves, on their shoes and trousers. They then sat in the garden, drinking americanos with hot milk and eating lemon drizzle. They split the fifth piece (Jim's piece) between the four of them.
They didn't stop smiling.

Jim.
We miss you. So very much.



Monday, 16 October 2017

Not a photo of a dog

Apple and cinnamon cake.
A taste of autumn. Gosh it's good.


Sunday, 15 October 2017

Life doesn't get much better...

Back to almost summer-busy this weekend.
The leaves are on the ground in the garden and there are lots of chestnuts being collected around the lanes.
We have a new cake from Naomi - apple and cinnamon - which is hard to resist.
On Saturday we held a celebration tea for a 25th Wedding Anniversary. The couple lives in Wales and has family in London and Coventry so chose us because of location. They came to test us out a couple of weeks ago. Apparently we passed.
Today we hosted teas for the Droitwich Lions - 24 of them. No roaring but plenty of scones.

High point of the weekend - Taking a booking for 23rd December. It felt odd but exciting.
Low point? Being told that a child had been sick on the floor of the loos.
And having to clean it up.

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Sweet as

I know, I know, I've just recently posted about a dog but what can you do? This one has to be our poster-girl/dog.
Honey is thirteen.
She was brought last week by a lady who told us that whenever their car turns into the Court car park Honey starts getting excited, leaps (remember, she's 13) down from the back of the car and pulls her guardian through the gardens. If whoever has brought her tries to go straight ahead into the Court building she stops and will go no further.
She has to turn right and come to the tearooms first.

I asked why? We don't feed her, it's not a carpeted floor, why would she like it?
They think she likes the atmosphere.
Apparently when we're closed she still has to walk round to us to make sure.
When she sees the closed gate Honey is happy to walk away.
Bravo.

Monday, 9 October 2017

Erinsborough, Warwickshire.

On Saturday we stayed on past closing to feed the National Flute Orchestra ahead of their concert in the church.
And so we were on hand when a couple arrived for a quick cuppa after hours. They were en route from their home in Warwickshire on a mercy mission.
Their neighbour had left for a holiday in Craven Arms with a cycle strapped onto the back of the car to spend a few days cycling in the Shropshire countryside.
Only when she arrived did she realise she didn't have the key to unlock the bike from the car.

The flautists were lovely and ate every last crumb.
They can come again.

Thursday, 5 October 2017

Safely gathered in

This evening I have collected two large pumpkins and an odd-shaped butternut squash which formed the centrepiece of the church harvest festival decorations. The squash was grown on the church warden's allotment. She seemed a bit dismayed that it was a funny shape and says she can't grow them any other way.
Guess what soup will be on the menu over the weekend?

Sunday, 1 October 2017

Catwalk Pup

Meet Meg.
Meg is modelling the latest dog fashion for wet walks.
A plastic bag toga.
It rained yesterday and Meg's owner had left her coat in the car so had to improvise.