We’re Off Out


Today we are travelling to Leatherhead for the annual Gilbert and Sullivan production of the Godalming Operatic Society directed by Jackie’s cousin Pat O’Connell.

We intend to make our leisurely way there; join Helen, Bill, Shelly and Ron at the Travelodge hotel where we will be staying the night; watch the second half of the Six Nations rugby match; dine at an Italian restaurant with Pat, Christine, and their daughter Olivia; watch Iolanthe; repair to the bar; go to bed; get up in the morning; all breakfast in the same cafΓ©; then go home. I might expand this tomorrow. If I can remember.

Before leaving I had a look at the front garden.

Outside there is a SLOW sign. Like many another traffic sign it has been left in the hedgerow after roadworks have been finished. The normal limit is 40 m.p.h. Which is largely ignored. So is the SLOW sign. Even when there are works around the bend up ahead.

Front garden tubs and owl

Although the arch has been partially demolished by Doris Day,

[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5MnUrhptPSo&w=560&h=315]

the tubs on Jackie’s makeshift platform have survived.

Tete-a-tetes, snowdrops, and hellebore

Tete-a-tetes, snowdrops, and hellebores share the beds.


The bergenias are beginning to show signs of age.


Behind this hellebore lies a profusion of trachystemon orientalis.


Meanwhile, alongside the Dragon Bed which did not exist when we arrived, towers a pastel pink camellia. It was only when we cleared the bramble jungle that covered it that we discovered thatΒ the plant was there. This is the first year it has born a profusion of blooms.


  1. Doris Day made me laugh. : ) Sounds like a wonderful trip! My mother had cameillas, of which she was quite proud. As a teenager, I decided to help her out and trim them. I was overenthusiastic as well as poorly timed. They survived, but that was the end of my gardening career for quite a while.

  2. Hope to hear of your adventures and have a wonderful escape weekend, you and Jackie with others! <3
    The garden is so much more full of color than ours! We found crocuses, pansies and a few daffodil shoots while walking briskly around my good friend, Jenny's neighborhood. She and I were amazed the pansies were up but cooler weather may take them out unless covered, Derrick!
    That photo with the purple, out of focus, flowers behind the pretty, crisp detailed hellebore was my favorite! πŸ™‚

  3. Enjoy your outing, Derrick. Love the hellebores, cant wait for spring here, to see ours. Enjoyed the DD flick but don’t understand the reference. Educate me.

  4. I happened to have the laptop connected to the TV so i watched Doris Day on the big screen. I was very taken with the energy in that clip. I replayed it a few times to see how she lifted herself upright on the bar counter with just thigh strength. That’s a distant dream for me! I bet it took a few takes to achieve. Your photos looked great on the big screen too. Isn’t that arch one that replaced another destroyed by a storm?

  5. Always liked Doris Day; I remember first hearing her in 1949, had a song Bewitched Bothered and Bewildered, played it on what went for the hit parade on the BBC,

    My mother had broken her wrist and was hospitalized, and I’d hear it sometimes on the wireless, not like today where the ears are punished by the incessant noise which masquerades as music.

    I stayed home to cook and look after my baby sister (aged 5) and cook for my dad, brother and sister.

    They lived on sausages and mash every night ’til my mother came home.

    All I knew how to cook back then πŸ˜€

    You usually bring back memories with these posts of yours Derrick

    1. The only way I could communicate with my mother in her last five years was by singing. I dredged up Doris Day from the memory banks. Ended up playing Que Sera Sera at her funeral. The people there understood the context.

  6. Those camellias look so delicate and pretty πŸ™‚ Unfortunately I’m too young to know about some of the references in the post, but I hope you all have a safe trip nonetheless!

  7. You’ve got some beautiful flowers already. I don’t think you’ll ever stop speeders until the police start getting interested. A little village near here had a speed camera given to the local neighbourhood watch and they clocked 250,000 speeders in a year. Mostly Audis and BMWs…their opinion not mine, I hasten to add.

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