Mist covers the fields. The hills to the east are barely discernable, just shapes in the grey light. Protective. Mrs Llew and I sometimes say they are a rampart between us and Greater London, 40 miles away. Yes, we loved London, in our youth. So did our children in theirs, especially North London where they went to school: Hampstead with its music, art and Bohemian chic. We enjoyed it all in our middle years. Now, in old age, we are happy to rest from the pace and pressures.
I drove by many villages today, where sheep sheltered under trees. The countryside and the hills rested in the rain. Secret. Content. Silent. They were veiled in seclusion, not sadness. This was a brief tour of our villages and country roads because I needed to charge my car battery.
The car failed me yesterday after I left the lights on briefly and lost all power. We were marooned in a dark car park. But then, from the light of a nearby office building, people came and surrounded us. They pushed us until the engine sparked. ‘Don’t stall now’, one of our rescuers warned. He was a stranger to us.
Darkness, a lighted building. Rescue. And now, a quiet, safe, shrouded countryside.