Wednesday, 23 May 2007

A day in a field

Well, after one of the most fun days Grit's had of late, along comes another one. This time we're off to a field and a wood with a theatre company to muck around as fairies and workmen from A Midsummer Night's Dream. The weather is hot, the sky cloudless, the kids are ready, and in a fit of preparation I've put petrol in the car.

The only slight problem is in finding the right field, located somewhere outside Pretty Town. One field looks much like another field to me. And the sat nav lady is of course no help once we get to the actual field level. So I'm following emailed instructions from the organiser.

'Take the first left at the roundabout'. Well that bit's easy. I'm on a single track road with a bit of dodgy tarmac and some plants growing through it.

'Go through the gate on your right. It is about a mile down'. After about a quarter mile there's a gate, on the right. There's also Mimi, in the car ahead of us, destined for the same home ed drama workshop as us, turning round, looking not sure. She leans out her car window and shouts. 'I think this is it!' 'The instructions say a mile down the road!' I shout back. 'I can see cars!' says Mimi. And she's right. Just beyond the edge of the field, there are cars on the horizon.

'Park at the barn' say the instructions. I don't see any barn. 'I'm going in!' shouts Mimi, and off she drives, through the gate into the field.

Now I don't know if you have seen the film Clockwise, but as I watch Mimi disappear over the field, I'm thinking, 'That's a field, Mimi. And the barn might be just over that hill, but what if there's no tractor to get us out the mud? What will we do then? That's just the sort of thing that happens to Grit, so I tell you what, I'm not following.'

So off I drive, sure Mimi's right, down the narrowing single track road which gets narrower and narrower and narrower.

Success! About a mile further on there's a flapping bit of paper nailed to a fence post. It reads 'Home schoolers', and sure enough, there's a gate, a stony track, and a barn, in a field, at the edge of a wood.

We're late, of course, but there's Richard Gere, heading off down the field with the home ed kids jumping and running and skipping behind. He certainly looks like Richard Gere. He's definitely got the haircut. And since he looks like Richard Gere I check my coiffure in the portaloo, just in case.

And while the kids are pretending to be fairies, and I've had an eyeful of Richard Gere in his shirtsleeves, out comes the picnic blanket, the flask, the biscuits, the book, and a proper day loafing about in a field can begin.

And an exhausted Mimi turns up too, probably worn out with all that driving about in fields. So I don't need to call out the AA, RAC, Emergency ambulance, police, or a man with a tractor.

Now that's about as faultless a day as it can get.

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