Today is my birthday - it is not a significant one with a zero and I was planning to spend it quietly at home in front of my sewing machine - playing. It was not to be.....firstly the phone rang hot for a couple of hours as children, brothers and friends rang in to offer birthday salutations. Then I checked emails and found several from people all over the place. Next a neighbour rang and said she was coming over but would only stay a minute - she delivered an enormous sponge flan covered with peaches. When I went to the Post Office there were birthday cards and a gorgeous textile postcard from France, and on the way home I passed some other really good friends on their way back from the village so stopped with them for coffee. A plot was hatched to go and visit the nearby town of Romsey to see a particular shop that interested them, lunch in a restaurant near it and then home via a very special garden belonging to other friends to photograph their daffodils.
This magical place is a farm that is over 100 years old, set in a hidden valley with old orchards, buildings and a beautiful creek running through it. The previous owners had lived there for two generations and one had been a renowned breeder of daffodils so at this time of year it is unbelievably beautiful, carpeted with many many varieties of narcissus and daffodils in all colours and forms, as well as bluebells and wood hyacinth - all set against a backdrop of lush green grass and mature deciduous, ornamental and fruit trees.
Much to my surprised delight, the present very generous owners had made me a birthday cake! This splendid day is not finished yet - I'm off to dinner tonight with today's companions and will take my neighbours cake to share. I feel very spoilt and privileged to live the life I do, and to have such wonderful new friends.