The stalls were just as they should be, plants all jumbled together and worth a rummage, a bookstall where I found two of the 1950’s penguin children’s books I’ve been collecting for just 20p and a skittle alley with union jacks fluttering in a warm breeze.
The sun was bright and hot. It was the world of VisitBritain, cottages were thatched and friendly folk waved from farmhouse doorways. Well not quite but almost.
Then we drove through the Sussex countryside to The Bradness Gallery, it’s the home of two artists and their garden was open for charity. We were greeted by the owner who sorted my Mum out helping her over the gravel drive.
The garden was perfect. Unbelievably perfect. There is a generosity of spirit in sharing such beauty with others and we appreciated the view as we sat under a tree and ate some mighty fine cake and drank tea with the smell of Philadelphus wafting in the breeze.
So often there is a gap between the essence of place that tourist posters and websites attempt to portray and the reality. But yesterday we lived in tourist Britain, the Britain of calendars views and guidebooks, fetes and union jack bunting, of nice folk with cheery smiles and excellent cake for tea! Fifteen hours of near perfection.
(If you are waiting for the ‘reveal’ of the puppet challenge it’s not forgotten, it’s just we can’t show you the pictures until the end of June when the images will be up on Clive Hicks-Jenkins Artlog alongside the other artists taking part! And soon there will be new ‘big work’ on Etsy too, and a magazine article about us……)