Over the years we’ve had many staycations, which to us means staying in our own home. (We’ve never been abroad together and neither of us has been out of the country since the 1990s! We choose never to fly, as it has such an environmental impact.) Out of all the staycations, this week must be the simplest yet. We barely used the car, spent very little, cooked easy meals, and made the best use of every day – sunny or rainy.
Our most exciting day out was by bicycle. A new cycle path has opened up which could help us reduce our car use significantly as it connects us with the supermarket, cycle shop and local walks.
It was wonderful having a day out this way, so relaxing using a dedicated cycle path especially when it was entirely separated from the road, and we got our bicycles checked over and did our grocery shopping as well.
When you have a staycation, understandably everyone hopes you will have sunny weather so you can go out every day. But we really didn’t want this, we were hoping for at least one good rainy day for wildlife, and we weren’t disappointed!
We enjoyed watching from the window, seeing the birds coming out to flap their wings in the raindrops and get a wash, and even one brave bee was seen venturing out for pollen. We also used the day to do some research into the top priorities for making a home more energy efficient, which has given us lots to think about.
After the rain everything was very lush and refreshed.
We’ve spent a lot of time wandering about in the garden, pulling out the odd few types of plants we don’t want. We only ever weed by hand, and never use weedkillers as they are poisonous for wildlife and the environment and totally unnecessary.
Wandering about in the garden is also the best way to get close to creatures. The colour combination of the ladybird and the lithodora flowers was stunning.
Our holiday ends with a weekend of more simple days and local walks, today we’ve been to the library and around the village. After a couple of no-spend-days, we’re being more creative with what we eat as well, and today’s treat was a home-made cake (lemon drizzle Victoria sponge) and a cup of lemon balm tea – made with leaves from the garden!
Helene Hanff – 84 Charing Cross Road
Otessa Moshfegh My Year of Rest and Relaxation
Betty’s Wartime Diary edited by Nicholas Webley
Bob Boilen – Your Song Changed My Life