Last night a beautiful gentian blue hot air balloon landed in the field opposite the kitchen. A man jumped out and came running over shouting "Is it all right if we land here?" Nice of him to ask but they were already down and it's not our land anyway.
The residents of Berrington came out to see what was going on. It wasn't a crowd: two farmers (father and son); my husband and our neighbour with his three children, socks wet from running out without any shoes.
There is also the farmer's wife, the farmer's daughter, the neighbour's wife and a quiet gentleman who lives alone on the corner. And me.
We wave as we pass in the lane, we occasionally help catch each others free-ranging animals, we ask the occasional favour and once in a while we find we have come together at the right moment and we share a beer and a gossip and a laugh.
A hot air balloon seemed an acceptable sort of interruption to a quiet Sunday evening in Berrington: Gently floating in as if trying not to disturb the peace. The rich can keep their helipads - I'm all for guests arriving quietly by balloon. It's a quiet life here in Berrington and that is exactly the way I like it.