28.06.2016 - 03.07.2016
Over our time in Foxham, Archibald and Maxwell have just about got us trained to their liking. They only had to wait ten minutes past their usual dinner time yesterday! Unfortunately, the weather was not always particularly kind to us, and which has lowered the interest in walking and generally being outdoors, but we’ve still managed a few walks in between the showers.
On Wednesday night we had dinner at the Foxham Inn, and I felt at home instantly when a cider was poured for me without even asking. And this was only on my second visit! The food was pretty gosh darned good (ALMOST a Fusion standard bread roll) – beetroot and goat cheese risotto, and beer battered haloumi and chips. Nom nom noms. Pretty fancy shmancy for a small pub in a tiny little village.
Thursday morning we took the dawgs for a short drive to Chippenham, where we found a nice big park to walk around and we really enjoyed barking at every dog we saw. And when I say ‘we’, I mean Archie. He really showed those dalmatians a thing or two. And as for that three year old boy walking quietly along with his mother – he definitely deserved to be barked at. We walked from the park to Sainsbury’s to do some grocery shopping, and the route involved going up and down stairs to cross the train tracks. This involved carrying Archie, because his stair climbing skills are not even close to his barking skills, poor poppet. Once we got to Sainsbury’s, I went inside to grab the necessary foodstuffs and Simon took the dogs for a walk around the block. Well, that was the plan, but Max refused to leave the carpark without me. Once I emerged with the groceries, he was more than happy to continue walking, but there was no way he was going to abandon me. I’d been the one dishing out the food, and Max obviously wasn’t willing to risk getting stuck with Simon, who had unknown feeding skills. Smart dog!
Simon’s pool playing skills have continued to be far superior to my own – the current tally is 16 games to 8 in his favour. Of those 8 games, I actually only ‘won’ two of them – Simon lost the other six by potting the black or white balls when they shouldn’t be potted. Nevertheless, I am determined to win another game or two before we leave this house.
We have also continued our cultural development program, by watching Pointless as religiously as Wimbledon will allow, as well as Take Me Out and other incredibly classy shows. Because you can’t always be going around learning stuff and things. For every museum you visit, you need to watch a trashy dating show. It’s called balance.
On Friday night we celebrated the new financial year by going back to the Foxham Inn, to get our just desserts. Peanut butter parfait? Don’t mind if I do! This is not just your average pub dessert… definitely worth waiting two nights for dessert, and definitely worth having after a smaller meal. Deeeeeeeeeeeeeeelicious!
The European Cup has been dominating the televisual offerings as well, much to Simon’s delight. He has enjoyed watching football matches at civilised hours of the day, and we have both revelled in a certain Icelandic commentator’s performances. England’s professional and incredibly highly paid team lost to a bunch of amateur players from a tiny country where training is limited on account of the weather, which caused almost more shock and horror than the outcome of the Brexit vote. It really has been a tumultuous time for England – but Max and Archie have coped with all the stress and uncertainty by sleeping and chasing empty plastic bottles, respectively. When you find a strategy that works for you, embrace it, I say.
The weekend has been sunny for the most part – almost summery! The dogs have partaken in a spot of sunbaking, and we checked to make sure that the outdoor furniture worked. It did. It’s important to check these things. We take our housesitting duties very seriously.
On Sunday we popped into Malmesbury for a steak and bacon pie… well, actually for some groceries, but I thought I’d chuck a steak-and-bacon-pie-in-Malmesbury reference in for Jas because he’s probably reading this on the train at some ungodly hour in the morning and we all need a laugh on public transport. Sunday afternoon consisted of taking the dogs for a walk and stopping in at our local (the Foxham Inn, of course) on the way home because it is important to support small business and the sun was shining and they have excellent cider on tap. Our friendly waitress (practically our best buddy by this stage) led us astray and next minute we were sharing a trio of house-made icecreams. Fusion is going to have to lift its game with the sorbet offerings, that’s for sure. We had three flavours – clotted cream, raspberry & mint and Horlick’s. Terribly English, terribly delicious.
And as the sun sets over the Wiltshire countryside, our Foxham housesitting adventure is coming to an end… nothing for it but to housesit the pool table and make sure the couch doesn’t run away before Peter and Jackie return home tonight. It will be a challenge, but I think we can do it.