What else I did at the weekend

Yesterday wasn’t all about the elections (the less said about the results of which the better).  After I finished my shift at the polling booth I walked down to Hands and stocked up on a few* supplies for a class I’m going to with MrsGwilk on Tuesday.  Then, as predictions of rain had been proved false by  a lovely sunny day, I caught the bus into town from there to catch the first Dorothy’s Pop-up Tearoom of the season.
I think I’ve mentioned Dorothy’s here before – it’s the creation of an ex-colleague (actually called Jan, just to confuse everyone), a tiny tea-room operating out of a caravan and serving proper English high teas (proper like the scones have actual clotted cream on them, not whipped cream!).  Every fine weekend over the summer she sets up her caravan on an empty site, sets out tables and chairs with proper tablecloths and fine china, and serves up tea, cucumber sandwiches, dainty little cakes, and of course, the aforementioned scones with jam and clotted cream.  She even has a selection of vintage magazines to peruse while you nibble.  It’s all very lovely and civilised and somehow made even more perfect by the fact that you’re sitting in the remains of a demolition site 🙂  (wish I’d thought to take my camera with me!)
I got there a bit early, so I helped her set up so we could catch up while we worked – every month or two we exchange emails trying to make a plan to have lunch, but one or the other of us always seems to end up having to cancel, so it was great to have a chance to chat.  Once customers started to arrive (including a couple dressed up in steam punk, who she said are regular customers of hers – they’re a perfect fit for the tea-rooms!) I switched from assistant to customer myself and ordered a high tea and sat and read a book while enjoying it and the sunshine.  Every so often when there was a lull between customers Jan would come and sit with me and we’d resume our conversation.  A lovely way to spend an afternoon.  (Harvestbird, we really must take your small person there one weekend to have proper ladies’ afternoon tea!)
When I got home I quickly whipped up a batch of muffins, as a plate for a games evening the Gwilks had invited me to.  It was at a friend of theirs, and in theory was supposed to be an alternative to spending the evening obsessively watching the election results, but of course what actually happened was that at regular intervals during the night someone would be unable to resist temptation and go and check, then announce the latest figures to everyone, to sighs of disappointment all round.  But despite that gloom hovering in the background, it still managed to be a fun evening.
* And I really did manage to restrain myself to just a few – I only got what was on the class materials list, and didn’t even look around the rest of the shop!
PS. The first few blossoms have opened on the cherry tree!  It’ll be a while yet before enough open to get the full impact, but it’s a start:

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    1. It is very odd – its taste and texture is somewhere between butter and whipped cream, but apparently it’s actually made by cooking cream: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clotted_cream.
      It’s not really something we have in NZ (I was amazed Jan managed to find a source for it, actually), but in southern England it’s the traditional thing to have with scones.

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