Stream wading. This was my birthday treat last year and this. There is an entrancing pleasure to clambering into a stream as far down as possible and paddling up it as far up as possible, defying the hidden gullies and submerged traffic cones and dangling en passant from tumbled trees. The patterns of water whirling round wellies, secret flowers on steep banks and the occasional fleeing rodent give the sense, unequalled on dry land, of being embedded in the landscape.
Pick-axeing. A joy much extolled by me and mystifyingly unappreciated by everyone else. March your rage and frustration into the garden, preferably your own. Grasp the handle of your pick-axe, preferably a wooden one. Hurl the spike viciously into the sod. There is an intoxication in feeling it yield and smash which will instantly cure you. And, if you keep at it hard enough you get a pond out of it. I have three.
Clean sheets. A pleasure intensified by novelty. The vicarage bedlinen is not changed as often as it ought to be, but every five...er, every couple of weeks or so I treat myself to the smug joy of laundered flannelette and even my bunions celebrate the difference.
|The vicarage linen cupboard. Ironing is not something I rate above One Direction.|
Leaves. Councils pay a fortune to eliminate them. Me, I can't get enough of them dead or alive.
Bedtime. When the voices of your pre-teens itemising your maternal failings are stilled and, softened by sleep, they are your babies again.
What things do you think are better than One Direction?