April Blog 2021

We have just got back from an early morning walk, the first without frost, even the birds seemed to have enjoyed it as the sound of the morning had intensified with bird song. Back to last month, which is hard as I would very much like to be out in the garden!!

Once again Laurence and Sally provided us all with yet another outstanding Zoom quiz night. On Saturday 27th March hosted by a very dapper Laurence, “Light at the End of the Tunnel” Quiz 2021 was called into action. After the initial greetings and banter we got underway with a short break to solve the picture round ‘Cheese’s’, which made us feel like going to tuck into cheese and biscuits along with a glass of wine! Have to give it to them, brilliant once again, in 1st place as a team were “Going Out Soon” the Robbs & Cheesmans. Joint 2nd were “Team Stewart International” Barbara & Son’s and “3 Shades of Grey” Dorothy, Rod & friend Stuart. The couples were in 1st place “The Only Way is Wessex” Philip & Caroline. In 2nd place “Shiver Me Kimbers” Charlie & Rachel. In 3rd place “Coppins” Richard & Sindy. A thoroughly enjoyable evening, well done all and a very big Thank You for helping us all, providing fun and laughter during trying times of ‘Lock Down’ which goes to all those who have helped so very much.

Palm Sunday on the 28th was a fine cool morning. A lovely gathering enjoyed the short service taken by Amy, including our walk around the churchyard and interaction of characters, hymns, prayers and music.

Wednesday 31st March in the evening on channel 5, Marilyn overnight became a TV star. ‘Jane Austen’s Footsteps’ with Gyles Brandreth was screened, which was excellent. Marilyn was a natural and according to her, Gyles was a very nice man and put her entirely at ease. May still be on catch up for those who would like to see it.

April had arrived and on the 3rd over the course of the morning, the church was gradually transformed with flowers, looking just beautiful, as the flower ladies came and went at their allocated time. Marilyn had brought the Easter garden which was put in place, also a few ladies ‘and Philip’ had polished and cleaned. Roll on the day when we can all be together once again. The Easter Service taken by Michael Kenning had to be split into two services for numbers to be kept safe. Enjoyed by all and a rousing hymn sung outside to end the service. Thank you to Barbara for our little eggs that had been put in place for all.

Friday 9th in the afternoon was Book group. Jean Rhy’s “Wide Sargasso Sea” inspired by Charlotte Bronte’s “Jane Eyre” was discussed. Set in the lush beguiling landscape of Jamaica in the 1830’s. Caught between her husband’s demands and her own precarious sense of belonging, Creole heiress Antoinette is driven towards madness. It scored 6.7.

Many Congratulations go to Philip Sykes on his appointment as High Sheriff of Hampshire 2021-2022. This very precedious position came into effect on 24th March with the declaration to uphold Her Majesty’s law and statutes. In Philip’s own words… “Any resemblance between the uniform of the High Sheriff and outfits I may have worn in the Steventon Panto is pure coincidence” !

These last few weeks although starting frosty have been wonderful. It has enabled us to enjoy the outdoors at this time of the year. Lambs frolicking in the sunshine, dawn chorus competing with owls and pheasants, amazing. First swallows of the year ducking and diving around, blackthorn out in full bloom and green shoots bursting out everywhere. Coffee in gardens with friends and families, BBQ’s too, a wonderful piece of normality. After watering the flowers in the church I came out and sat on the bench in the churchyard. No one else around, warm sunshine, views looking through the headstones towards the stunning fields of bright yellow rape fields and changing colours of tree tops, perfect peace. We have much to look forward to. Loads to do in the garden, the expectant joy of watching seeds emerging to eventually get planted out, and yes, another BBQ to look forward to. Enjoy all and even more so, the enjoyment of at last being able to see our loved ones and hugs, yippee…