|Just popping into Chard for some baked beans.|
I had a strange experience the other day on Facebook. No, it wasn't abuse, it was instead a series of messages from friends of mine around the country and the World enquiring as to whether I was alright or not. I wondered why they were suddenly all so concerned about my welfare, but then the dreaded word that they were all focusing on became apparent.... Somerset. Somerset, it seems, is now considered the most dangerous place to live on Planet Earth. Soweto? Hah! Beirut? Piffle! Syria? For girls! Chatham? Well, that is pretty f***ing ropey, but apparently Somerset is now considered more of a threat to humanity than Medway towns full of arse-faced chavs with the mental capacity of a burrito. And it was all down to the flooding everyone was seeing on their TV sets every night. Hour after hour you'd see welly wearing Londoners who work in "meeee-ja" and who had not even the vaguest idea of where Somerset was except they'd heard from their old University pal Briony that it was something to do with the Glastonbury Festival. These bland news reporters were plonked in front of cameras showing angry damp people shaking their fists at various politicians, each of which was trying to be more contrite than the last one, as huge dodgy looking pipes pumped prodigious quantities of water away from the flooded plains. If my house was to be flooded I would have to be quite spectacularly unlucky and there would have to be one heck of a lot more rain. Crewkerne, where I live, is built on some hills, I live halfway up one of these hills on the third floor of an old converted Victorian dairy. If I do happen to pull back the curtains one morning and see fish swimming past the window, then, and only then, would I panic. So to all my friends who have phoned, texted and sent me Facebook messages desperate to know if I was dry, safe and un-drowned, the answer is yes, to all three of your questions. You really don't have to go far from where I live to see the land turned into a sea, but I am pretty sure I'll survive where I am.
I was up in Norfolk the other day for a return visit to White Woman Lane School in Norwich. This is a great place to visit, fun kids and some of the grooviest teachers you could ever wish to meet. There is also a very high preponderance of Americans teaching in this school. But then, they are all gorgeous and friendly so I personally encourage this special relationship. It was a biggish group of kids, in fine form and some terrific costumes and we had a splendid day all round. The joust was loud in the extreme and guess what?? The ladies won AGAIN.
GENTLEMEN 12.5 - 20.5 LADIES
The journey back wasn't so bad, but just south of Long Stratton there had just been what appeared to be a horrendous crash involving two lorries and two cars. One of the cars and one of the lorries had piled through the large expensive looking brick wall of a posh house next to the road. Paramedics were working on one of the cars with screens placed around it, which didn't look good. I only hope anyone involved with this accident are all now OK.
I had some time with my lovely James, before heading down to Kent to see Michelle Coda and Matt Rentell, and of course the lovely Elaine! Smashing! After this brief pleasurable interlude I was back on the road back down to Somerset (with my water wings pre-inflated, just in case). I saw a lot of my old mate Pete Flanagan and even attempted an evening out with Matthew Applegate at the Rose and Crown in East Lambrook. We met over there on the Wednesday evening, only to discover the place was closed for no apparent reason. Rather stumped at what to do next we headed back to Barrington to try out the new re-vamped local pub "The Barrington Boar", formerly for many hundreds of years known as the Barrington Oak, or the Royal Oak at Barrington. Why do people have to change things like this for no apparent reason? Anyway, the pub is very nicely turned out, the beer is perfectly adequate and the restaurant was pleasingly packed out for a midweek evening. So I will be trying it again.
I am now in Essex again as it is half term and I am spending some lovely times with my gorgeous son James. We went bowling yesterday, where predictably enough he thrashed me. Then today we have been to see the "Lego Movie" which was tremendous fun and so inventive, and then had a most pleasing "Ruby Murray" for lunch. James is my pride and joy and we are having such a fun half term, and there is much more to do!
Also during this period I had a great meeting with Doug Bolton and Sarah Morris about future film and TV projects, and speaking of such things - our movie from Hever Castle is now on the Internet movie database (IMDB.com) - I am officially a director, actor and writer. Never been so proud of myself. So if you want to see our entry on IMDB, then just click on this link: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt3541544/?ref_=nm_flmg_dr_1 You know you want to.