This is the fifth in a series of posts describing my recent trip to England, Ireland, the Netherlands and Wales, from writing course to school reunion and more.
This is where I get to tell you something amazing.
I met Nicola Morgan!
Yes, I did. Really! She had 45 minutes free before she had to catch her train back to Edinburgh and she spent them with me. And she is even nicer than her Internet persona. I was a little nervous at first, but she put me at ease and the minutes flew by. Wow! Thank you, Nicola!
After that, I had planned to go on to meet the travel writer, Jo Carroll. That didn’t work out because she had scaffolding problems. Although I’m really sorry we didn’t get to meet this time, it would have been hard to be ready in time. As it was, I had time for a proper night’s sleep the night before (needed even more after I was scratched by the cat), and I was able to return after meeting Nicola to organise my suitcase, leaving behind stuff that I could meet up with later, before making my way to Staines. S, whom I knew only through folk dancing, had very kindly invited me to stay with her and her husband. One of her daughters was there, too, and they all made me feel very welcome. The heatwave was still on, so we ate outside in the garden. The evening air was pleasantly cool and the food delicious.
The following day, I used the time I had alone to go for a surprisingly beautiful walk by the river. I say “surprisingly” because I lived near Staines for three years while at university and never realised it was worth visiting. Since I was alone, I was able to jot down notes describing the scenes, making me feel like a real writer. I even wrote the rhythm of a cuckoo’s song:
At least, I assumed it was a cuckoo, but I’m no bird listener.
In the evening, S took me to her folk dancing group in Slough, which couldn’t have been more different from the one I’m used to. There were about seven people, instead of over a hundred. They were all very friendly, but obviously the atmosphere was very different – much more calm and sedate. And at the end I didn’t feel as if I’d had much exercise, whereas usually I struggle to go up the stairs. Still, I recognised most of the dances and had a lovely time.
To round off their wonderful hospitality, S’s hubby drove me to Heathrow’s Terminal 1 early the next morning (but not early for him) for the next stage of my trip.
9 replies on “The Social Sandwich, Part 5”
This has been wonderful traveling along with you on your trip. I look forward to seeing what new adventure you get into next 🙂
Glad you’re enjoying it 🙂
There’s more? I do love an extra large sandwich… Looking forward to hearing about the next stage of your trip!
There’s plenty more, which will appear as soon as I can write it.
This doesn’t seem as social anxiety to me… I wish I’d have your courage…I’d never be able to adventure in meeting a virtual friendship 🙂
Social anxiety takes different forms.
Now, that you’ve pointed it out it makes sense. Sorry, I was not minimizing just inquiring from one social-anxious to another 🙂
That’s OK. Social anxiety manifests itself in different ways, but the thoughts behind it tend to be very similar.
Indeed, it starts with the thought… I went for something called noise-therapy which analyzed my chakra (even though I am well informed & have tried a lot of different things in alternative medicine & therapy I never paid much attention to the chakra “field”) which diagnosed a very closed upper-chakra & a far too open one in the stomach level which left me vulnerable to the public by absorbing far too much the energies around me…since I finished that therapy my anxiety has been drastically reduced which didn’t transform me into a social “beast” but nevertheless made my life much more serene among a group of people 🙂
Your blog is probably a relief for many people going through similar experiences…