Yesterday we were supposed to go to London. We were to hop on the train at the station at the bottom of the village and once we’d arrived at Paddington station we would walk to Regent’s Park to meet Willy Wonka for lunch.
But we’ve all got rotten colds so we decided against it. Instead, we walked around the village we have recently moved to and that I grew up in. It’s lovely, it has everything we need but I still stop to ask: where is everyone?
We stopped briefly to drop off some money at BUB.1’s pre-school for a farm visit and then had a picnic in the park. It’s not Regent’s Park. It was almost empty. The BUBs ran wild, found bugs, jammed banana into their mouths and shot themselves headfirst down slides. On the way home we stopped for an ice cream at the local shop.
My thoughts turned back to London as we moseyed back, specifically the squares – Hoxton, Soho, Golden – which over the years, on hot spring days like this one, I have had lunch in. Battling to find a space, perched on a cardigan, eating a ready-made sandwich. A different kind of picnic. A different world.
I try to forget the time I lay down in the sun one lunchtime and awoke to find a tramp lying with the top of his head touching mine. All I can see is bright clothes, happy people, chatter and light.
When we got home, I took BUB.2 upstairs for his nap. BUB.1 followed, laid down next to us and we all dropped off for three hours on my bed, wrapped around each other, the sun streaming in and keeping us warm.
Not such a bad day, after all.