We were having breakfast this morning in a pub where we had stayed the night. It hadn’t been a lock-in or anything like that,, the pub, the very excellent Black Swan in Devizes has accommodation, and we were fortunate to have booked in to stay the night. Fortunate because it was just by chance i came across it when we were looking for a room for the night. Back to breakfast…
We were seated at a table in the centre of the room; there were only another two couples, one on the other side of the room and the other sitting just behind us in the window. The couple had the sort of voices which carry and it was almost impossible not to hear some of what they were saying as they were seated so close to us, and there was no background music (thank you Black Swan)
They didn’t seem to know each other very well and most probably had just met here for breakfast before going off somewhere and i gathered it was to arrange an art exhibition. I was drawn into a story one told. He goes or used to go cycling, particularly in hilly areas or in a particular hilly area. He would arrive at the top, and dismount to admire the view, taking a breather no doubt, and soaking up the beauty of what he saw. Then he would climb on his bike and off he would cycle until he reached the next place with a beautiful vista to appreciate. Then he would come to a place where he would dismount and just wrap himself in a blanket, sitting or lying and close his eyes to let the splendour of the place overwhelm him – I guess with his eyes shut it was the mental images plus the sounds and the “heady scent” of the wild flowers and vegetation around him.
It sounded like a scene from a nostalgic film of someone’s life from another time, or an unpublished excerpt from a book such as ‘Cider with Rosie’, and although technically I was eavesdropping, it was hard in the quiet dining room not to be able to hear what others were saying. I can’t imagine writing anything myself with a scene like this, but you never know!!
Here is a link to The Black Swan