Bloody Hill

In East Anglia I miss the rolling Staffordshire and Cheshire countryside of those halcyon childhood days. Luckily I got to do a muddy tramp around today with Nicola, Tom and their three boys. We finished up at a Barthomley pub that has been commended for its authenticity and is so old that I can barely stand up straight. We drank pop and warmed ourselves by the fire, and left when the hunt came for its post pheasant-killing tipple.

These three are budding wildlife enthusiasts, so we stuck on the Blue Planet DVD I bought them for Christmas. Isaac has an impressive knowledge of the different depth zones of the ocean. I told them I'd take them on an adventure when they're older.

In the evening my sister and I braved the Trafford Centre in Manchester as we hadn't bought each other anything for Christmas. The return journey was eventful because of course no trip should ever be undertaken without instagramming a selfie, but it took a while to perfect as my sister thinks she has a chin like Jimmy Hill's.

It had snowed and my sister erupted with a nose bleed as we were on an M6 entry slip road. She was mostly concerned about getting blood on her jumper as I fumbled with a bandage from her glove box; the nearest thing to a tissue I could find. Near hers we consoled ourselves with a McDonalds and could be found scoffing it at 11pm.

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