i went off on my travels at the weekend, not that far, just newcastle to leamington spa. the train journey was wonderful, like watching the best film - the train windows reflecting the sun on to the fields all the way, fields of crops full of texture, velvet green, a glimpse of purple vegetables, pale yellow-brown sugar cubes of straw, a strip of pink weeds and a wild sprinkling of bright red poppies, huge marching lines of pylons and smaller telephone lines across the countryside, the sky punctuated by the dot of a hot air balloon, even the industrial buildings and those lost areas by the tracks and by stations have a certain attraction with 30s, 40s, 50s architecture, colourful metal buildings, tidy rows of machinery, abandoned and forgotten rail stock through the majestically curving stations of Newcastle, Darlington, York and the setting sun hiding then peering out behind the clouds.
and in leamington spa there was my best friend from school, M, the type of friend you lose contact with for years at a time and when you meet it's all OK, like you've never been out of touch. there was also her new husband and a cat that slept in a cardboard box. there was also rowing on the river and a proper italiano coffee in a wonderful cafe with grapes growing in the back courtyard, simply delightful.
[photos to follow when i'm back from holidaying]