Reflecting on the positives!

St Mary's Church, Kidderminster

Just back from a week’s holiday to our favourite haunt – the beautiful bay of Woolacombe in north Devon.

Everyone has their own favourite “away-from-it-all” place. Well, this is my family’s best loved, the place where we can all kick back, relax and recharge our batteries. We first ended up there by chance for a weekend away, some six years ago, and had a brilliant time with a group of friends.

Since then we have made an annual pilgrimage back there, either as a family, or with extended family, or with groups of friends.

Every time the experience is different – yet comfortingly the same. I guess that’s why I love it. While everything else in life seems to speed by at a hundred miles an hour, here we can all slow down, take it easy, and get with the surfer vibe.

Every visit, without fail, I can be sure that we will do all of the following:

  • Climb up Potter’s Hill overlooking the bay and marvel at how windy it is, no matter what the season
  • Make the two-and-a-half mile trek along the beach to Putsborough at the other end, take a picture, and then walk all the way back
  • Tuck into delicious grub at the beachfront Red Barn pub
  • Get sick on the swingboats (will I never learn?)
  • Get sick on Big Chief Waffles and scrummy icecream from Normies (will the kids never learn?)
  • Get up early on the first morning to run along the beach to kickstart my new fitness regime (then forget to go again for the rest of the holiday)
  • Buy a bodyboard/inflatable boat/other seaside gizmo which we don’t have room for in the car
  • Enquire about buying a campervan from a surf dude
  • Have a beach barbie while watching the sun disappear
  • Have a serious discussion about what the year ahead holds and what we want to achieve individually and as a family, while getting slowly drunk – then by the next day completely fail to recall what we decided
  • Eat lots of croissants and pain au chocolat for breakfast, completely forgetting we are not in France
  • Read at least two books each

Ah, good times. But why am I waffling on about Woolacombe when the picture in today’s blog is of St Mary’s Church in my hometown of Kidderminster?

Well, partly its because I have yet to get round to sorting through the hundreds of pictures I took while on holiday.

But mostly it’s because coming back from holiday always puts me in a reflective mood – and I thought this shot summed up where I am with my thoughts about Kidderminster.

I’m a relative newcomer to the town.  I arrived here eight years ago knowing nobody outside my immediate family of hubby and baby son.

It has taken me a long time to get used to living here but I’ve now made some lovely friends, and discovered some of its hidden secrets. I still think there’s a lot wrong with the town. For example, there’s still only one decent pub (The Boar’s Head Tap House) and barely any good shops – even the new Debenhams is a pale imitation of a department store. It’s a cultural desert when it comes to decent movies, plays and music. Picking a secondary school, as I will soon have to, seems to be about picking the best of a bad bunch.

But that hasn’t stopped me falling in love with it just a tiny bit – especially when the sun is shining.

I took this picture of St Mary’s Church on a suitable sunny afternoon. The church towers over the canal which runs through the heart of the town. It reflects my post-holiday mood – if you look hard enough you will always find something pretty wonderful. Time to count my blessings.

St Mary's Church tower reflection

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