Wednesday, 13 April 2016



Leaving makes you appreciate the place in all its rose-tinted glory. There is no rain in the memories, or mud, or Saturdays full of endless homework and tantrums. There is no tedious housework, managing builders and daily trips to the train station. There is only love, blossom and floral bunting - like an article in Country Living magazine. I brought my children up in the heart of the Sussex countryside, and now we are leaving.

As I drove into the car park of the village hall, I sat for a few moments and saw my younger self taking A to preschool, P on my collapsed hip as she sucked her dummy furiously. I smile briefly at times past, of both children learning to play, to have friends, to run in school races and to try standing on the stage for their first Christmas nativity.

I drive past Bodium, Bedgebury and Batemens. The three B's which saved my sanity. A mornings wander with my babies and a needed coffee afterwards - there was half a day gone, now to fill the other half before he gets home. Life with two preschoolers seems so very, very far away.

The garden has plants I planted when we first arrived in Sussex - faithfully flowering every year, watching the children grow too, hoping not to have their heads knocked off with an over zealous football.

Nine years has passed in happiness (mainly happiness) - the formative years of my children's lives, and as we get ready to leave, I see the significance of it all.

The twelve week countdown to Mallorca begins and among the packing, the organising and the planning I am starting to say goodbye - goodbye to the memories of Sussex, both little and huge.

Saying it slowly and with thanks.