My American niece lives in what appears to be Beatrix Potter-land. Although this wonderful illustrator lived north of Buckinghamshire, which is where I visit, the countryside looks very like the images in her books.
I don’t remember any depictions of the nasty weather that plagues this land. I am SO glad I brought heavy-duty rubber boots to protect me from the ankle-deep mud and puddles that riddle every passageway. I walked with my great niece and nephew to their schools using the handy footpaths that take one from one village to another without having to share the road with automobiles. This is what the sky looked like mostly:
OK, OK, it’s still officially winter. But there were signs of spring everywhere:
Everyone in Jordans & Seer Green has delightful gardens, and the plum trees were just beginning to flower. My niece has several old apple trees, which are holding out for better weather.
On my walks to school, I’d see rabbits, pheasant and of course the usual domestic animals—cows and horses. One farm bred Shetland Ponies, which have a quite inelegant silhouette:
One day I decided to visit the local pub while I waited for Théo to get out of school. They were very accommodating, permitting me to sit and draw for a couple of hours. Of course, I ordered a hearty lunch.
Don’t let the bucolic ambiance fool you! Buckinghamshire is home to very wealthy Brits. It’s not for nothing that nearby London is the International centre for Finance. So, while I ordered “Fish & Chips”, this is what I got: perfectly cooked, fresh, and accompanied by pea spouts and a tasty caper sauce served on the shell of a razor clam.