Part 2 of my weekend adventuring in Botley begins at 7am in a swelteringly hot hotel room. The radiator had, disastrously, been and left on overnight. As soon as the time no longer had a 6 in it, we hopped out of bed and got ourselves down to the gym. This might be early for a Sunday but when Granny Hatcher and Heaton have had our 8 hours, we’re good to go!
The great thing about gym before breakfast is that no amount of asking (4 times) could persuade us to have our free Full English. Instead we gorged on fruit, muesli and yoghurt. Great start to the day.
Now awake, we returned to our favourite little car park in Botley where it was the ideal spot to begin our glorious walk through Hampshire’s beautiful countryside.
Along the way we met some 4-legged friends. Anna beckoned them over with the special clicking sound that is universal horse lingo for “come along now little horsey”. They politely obliged and let us have a little neck-rub.
Anna’s fave was Pecan (not his real name. But we needed to give them names, obvs) and I got stuck with the slightly more aggressive Fletcher.
Before too long, Pecan and Fletcher were bored of their two-legged companions and mooched off back into the field, so Anna and I continued our ambling through the woods…
…arriving a little while later at Elsie’s. Elsie’s is the cutest little tea shop on the small high street, and is exactly how my future tea shop business will look. Every little detail was quaint and pretty and an incredibly relaxing place to sit back and chill in. We cursed the gym for making us feel too ‘good’ to eat cake. The huge slab that wafted past us from the kitchen to the other table looked divine. A good enough excuse as any to return to Botley, I say.
Next stop, the farm. I was so eager and excited about a visit to the farm yard…until I found out you can’t buy goat and sheep food. The pellets are only for feeding the birds – what a load of rubbish. Instead, we had to work on all our best clicking, clucking, mooing and baaing to lure the animals to us for a cuddle.
We saw sheepses…
… and pigs, including a really big fat preggers one that was making a horrible grunting sound that I imagine means there’ll be piglets in blankets very soon.
There were lots of birds, but because I’d stubbornly refused the food pellets they were more interested in the other children.
Then this old porker, the ugliest pig I’ve ever seen. But we did try and be nice as poor old Henry had been stuck right round the back on his own. Even the chickens stuck to the other side of the hood.
Our farm yard trip also included a visit into the Victorian house which was all quite cute and quaint.
I’ve done quite a lot of these things on school trips before, but it was nice to mosey around and do it without a clipboard and pen, filling in the ‘modern day terms’ for this and that.
Back outside we had a few more animals left on our list.
Helga, Lottie and Heidi. Animals are SO easy to name.
And then it was the WORST bit.
It was home time.
We had to leave all the animals behind as we hopped back in the car and headed back to London.
All in all, though, a superb little weekend away. xx