Roll up for the Mystery Tour
They’ve got everything you need
Roll up for the Mystery Tour
Eldest granddaughter had asked whether we could do a longer version of the mini mystery tour we did some months ago. We’d gone to a garden centre and she hadn’t wanted to go straight home so I’d let her choose where we went. Each time we reached a junction she chose whether we went left, right or straight on. We’d spent an hour or so meandering around the Worcestershire countryside and she’d thoroughly enjoyed herself.
The allotted day dawned and it was HOT. Slightly overcast but hot. We headed out into the countryside and she began to talk. And talk. And talk. And talk…….covering every subject close to the heart of a 14 year old teenage girl. Oh, the insecurities about her appearance (she is gorgeous but doesn’t see it, always comparing herself unfavourably with others) the angst (friends, boys, the pressure of conforming, school work, future career) and the intensity (everything)! My ears ached, but how lovely that she felt comfortable enough to be so open. I told her that I’d never have had such a conversation with my mother, never mind my grandmother.
Weaving in and out of Worcestershire and Warwickshire, we drove, if not in circles, then on a very circuitous route eventually arriving at a picnic site close to the river in Bidford on Avon where we ate an early lunch and rested awhile whilst watching the boats. I sat back, closed my eyes for a while and enjoyed the sun on my face until …….. “You do your make-up quite nice for a nanny,” the darling girl told me apropos of nothing.
Back in the car she started chattering again, this time of her interest in interior design, (she has a design programme on her iPad and a passion for searching the ‘Rightmove’ website for super-expensive houses in London). Assuring her that I did know what ‘Stately homes’ are, she said she’d like to see one some day. As we weren’t far from Coughton Court I asked if she’d like to see one now. She would, so we did.
Still lived in by the Throckmorton family which has been in residence for 600 years, it is now owned by the National Trust so we paid the entry fee and took a look around the house which Granddaughter pronounced ‘a bit old fashioned’!
Famed for its part in the 1605 Gunpowder plot, it was here that the Catholic plot to murder Queen Elizabeth I and replace her with Mary, Queen of Scots, took place.
I especially liked the stained glass windows and ornately carved furniture, whilst Granddaughter was taken with the galleried landing which looked down over the main hall.
Perhaps because the house was so warm and stuffy, we both enjoyed the gardens more. Now much sunnier than the start of the day, there was also a bit of welcome breeze.
Our day ended with an ice cream sundae which we ate in the pub garden close to home. Had she had a good day, I asked. She said that she’d really liked it and asked if we could do another mystery tour one day; then asked if I’d enjoyed it too. I said it had been lovely to spend a whole day with her – magical in fact.