It was to be a treat for our relationship. A night away after dealing with the dreadful corona virus and my husband developing covid pneumonia and nearly dying back in April.
Although it seems a lifetime ago now – I know as a Therapist that a few months is nothing in the healing process. My grief had finally moved through – so potent at our sudden seperation – if I hadn’t known better I could have attached it to other matters going on in the world. As our society shielded our NHS, I shielded my grief – self care so important at this time. Yet I couldn’t travel – my normal way to escape and bring me back to me.
My husband has regained his health but can still be plagued with fatique – he is a little different than before, I see it when I look into his eyes – understandably so I think. Yet at the same time-my man is back.
After enjoying our Denbies vineyard tour and before booking into the hotel at 3pm, we decided to explore the area a little before returning and settling in. This was the first time I had visited the Surrey Hills and it was proving to be both beautiful and interesting.
First we took a stroll around Silent Pool, a small but lovely area close to Albury Organic Vineyard (A bit more exploration can be done here I think in future.) and only 19 minutes away from Denbies. After, we drove to Shere, only 4 minutes away and the little village which played host to the movie The Holiday.
Shere is the quintessential english village. The stream running through the middle – the local pubs, shops and church close by. Parking was easy to find for us on this day but we had just come out of lockdown and it was still busy but gorgeous. In one way the perfect antidote. We strolled along a little lane – gazing over an allotment which offered courgettes, runner beans, carrots, sweat peas and more, before sitting on a bench at the side of the water course, eating an ice cream and simply watching life go by. It was a delight to visit, but hell I thought normally at the height of summer as a tourist needing to park or drive through. In the autumn mist or in a winters snow – it must be at its most beautiful though. What a joy to live here with all the toings and froings of the tourists in the summer months!
Back to the Vineyard Hotel, parking was easy and outside -yet I found the closed black front door a tad unwelcoming and imposing. It was opened quickly by the manager when we rang the doorbell and after booking in and ordering our desire for breakfast on the form supplied, finding the way to our room – we were spoiled with the delightful view over the vineyards but needed to watch our nakedness whilst there – as although we had a back door which led down to the garden – there was a lovely house situated behind it and so we kept the blind drawn. Not wanting to scare them or us!
The room was pleasant and comfortable and like I’ve said – the view across the vineyard a real privilege to enjoy. I think that was the best bit about it. The location. We sat and watched runners, groups, walkers and dog owners make their way along the clearly signposted paths in the vineyard and up to peruse the surrounding hills and woods. A real joy to be here.
The bathroom I wasn’t overkeen on, only because the shower sprinkled over the side of the bath and I didn’t like the laminate floor, the area became wet quickly and due to the flooring and step outside the bathroom, I thought this could be a risk area.
Everything else was lovely and the breakfast in the morning was very nice. A full english, set to the sound of Classic FM – the sky filled with mottled clouds to frame the stunning view across the vineyard. We thoroughly enjoyed our night sleeping in the comfortable bed, nestled in the quiet countryside and started the day with an early morning stroll before breakfast. Not rolling out of the hotel until 11 am. Making the most of our time together, alone.
We drove to Frensham Great Pond on leaving – another place I had heard of and wanted to visit. Again – if you don’t want to be stuck in your car in country lanes with the masses, then out of season would be the best time to visit I think. Yet, I felt a little like I was in New Zealand, such was the greenery surrounding us – it brought joy to my heart to discover the pond in such a gorgeous environment and with easy parking. It was only a 50 minute drive from Denbies – so not far and although I would have walked a little more whilst there, was mindful of how my husband does not enjoy this pasttime. A short stroll and drive around its perimeter was enough on this day and my heart began to tug as I felt the pull to visit my daughter in Bournemouth, which at this point was closer to us than Southend, our home town. I didn’t want to return home and could have simply kept on travelling but although it was only a short trip it was a wonderful one which we both enjoyed. More exploration is needed and maybe a llama walking trek to be had in the future!