Visiting my good friends Gill and Dave is always a fine excuse to let your hair down and leave all London woes behind. It's not simply the excellent hospitality because anyone can provide good food and drink. It's the open, kind, warm and honest sense of welcome you get from them. Sitting in their big kitchen with a group of lovely people is one of my favourite ways to spend a weekend.
Many work colleagues, acquaintances, and people with whom you come into day to day contact are too intensely wrapped up in their own business to share concerns or engage in any depth emotionally. It's all quite superficial and self involved. I'm not saying this is a bad thing, just the contrast is marked when you are taken out of this work drag and placed in a different social environment.
As in when you are taken into the heart of a group and engaged in talk. And banter and chat and deep stuff and giggly nonsense and the whole damn lot. It reminds you of the many ways that we should all be able to communicate. And sometimes we neglect our ability for rounded communication. Or in other words, getting merry with friends.
Interestingly the teens of varying haircuts were also interacting. There may have been computer games involved, however they were all in the same room and not in differing time zones. Which is significant. Incidentally they also had this sixth sense when food was about to be served, and they'd emerge, engage and then carry on with their virtual rescue mission. Assisted ably with lashings of chocolate milk and vodka.
All of this philosophy has been caused by a couple of minor dramas on the way home.
Firstly the Lord Archer Obelisk that you can see from the M40. Irresistibly drawn there, we contrarily followed our noses til we saw the little kissing gate leading on to a public footpath. We stumbled over mud to the plinth hoping to find enlightenment as to why such a gracious monument was there. But were disappointed and decided to google later.
A horsey commotion caught our attention. As someone of reasonable country sense I had checked the field for wild animals and seeing a horse calmly grazing, I'd judged it safe. Which is why we found ourselves face to snorting, angry, ready to lash out live tesco burgers. We fled. Safe in the car we collapsed hysterically.
Back on the motor way we immediately caught the stationary traffic of a very close accident. Helicopters, ambulances, highway vehicles went about their business as we waited. And realised if we hadn't gone on our excursion we may have been part of the chaos up front.
Turns out fate fancied our chances more against hooves, over a collision of high speed tin cans.
All stories to be stored up and related to real friends, over drinks and a fine spread of food. It's all about communicating the lived experience. And avoiding horses hooves, obviously.