I’ve been a little sporadic about updates here, because settling in to our new home in the Vale of the White Horse is taking a little longer than I would have liked. But things are starting to take shape.
Over the bank holiday weekend we experienced another hallmark of country life: the famous Uffington White Horse Show. As you will see, if you follow the link, there was a lot to see and do. I had hoped to have a stall there myself, but wasn’t able to get my poop in a pile in time. Maybe next year.
We attended on the bank holiday Monday, because the weather on Sunday was utterly miserable. Judging by the feedback from the stallholders I spoke to, most people opted for the same approach. Apparently Sunday was depressingly quiet. Having done a few depressingly quiet events myself, I know exactly how discouraging they can be, I’m just glad that the weather on Monday was much improved.
So, what were the highlights for me?
I need to start by saying that it was wonderful to be able to take Jess with us. It is a well-known fact that the English love their dogs. But in the towns and cities, this is less obvious than in the country. Almost every country pub and coffee shop I’ve been to is dog friendly. I love being able to have Jess for company when I’m out and about. Even though she now needs help getting into and out of the van (which brings a lump to my throat, even as I think about it). There were hundreds other dogs at the show. Of course, some of them might have been there for the dog show, but most of them were just there because… because this is the English countryside. What made it even better was the amount of attention my old girl got. She’s a mixed breed and nothing spectacular, but she has such a pretty face, and there’s just something about her that causes people to warm to her.
Mr Namasi and I spent a good long time wondering around the vintage cars on display. If I had seen a list of entries beforehand, I would have been able to predict which each of us would drool over most, and so it was. Here is Mr Namasi’s favourite.
He is a lifelong Jag fan, and there can be few cars more iconic than the E-type.
For me, it was this one.
I have a longstanding love for the little MG with a back that looks a bit like an old Austin Healey.
In fact, when Mr Namasi and I were dating, I used to tell him that if he ever wanted to marry me, he’d have to buy me one. In red or British racing green. He never has. Blighter.
We also saw motorbikes, trucks and all sorts of lovingly built/restored static steam engines.
Of course, there were food and drinks stalls doing a brisk trade. And a marquee with various traders. I bought a raffle ticket for a beautiful patchwork quilt, and a handmade belt for Mr Namasi.
We watched a bloke do some stunts on motorbikes and quadbikes, while providing his own commentary, which was pretty cool!
There was a guy doing stump carving with electric saws. A man on stilts. A funfair. BMX stunts (which we missed). Falconry (which we saw glimpses of, from a distance). A dog show, which we avoided – Jess gets a bit grumpy around other dogs, and we know she’s the best dog without a rosette to prove it. Heavy horses showing their skills. Helicopter rides. All sorts.
As we left, we spotted some additional traders outside the main space, and I was hijacked by some pretties which will find their way into various kreations in due course. Aren’t they gorgeous? They came from Button Box Devon.
If I have one criticism of the show, it was that there was no water provided for the many, many dogs in attendance. We did find a tap (faucet for any American readers), and Mr Namasi was able to give Jess a little water in his cupped hands, but she really could have used a bowl or trough. I suspect any dogs doing agility for the dog show would have needed a drink too.
We look forward to next year’s event!