Monday, 5 May 2014

Down Time


When I’m not painting, I’m thinking of painting.  Anyone who is self-employed will know how difficult it is to down tools and stop, let alone relax…….so how about this – a beautiful lodge in North Devon where the website states “unplug, reconnect, revive”.
In a beautiful “tent” (which I do emphasise is in inverted commas – you have to see it),  where the heating is provided only by burning wood and light from solar and candle,  the lovely owner explains gently to us and presumably to every new arrival, that the one and only power socket in the tent is best used only to recharge the camp-lights.    You know what this means,  no charging of gadgets.  Every quick peek to check messages and a download of emails takes the battery nearer to the dreaded “red bar” and will inevitably cut off your connection to the outside world.  It’s surprising how often you look and it feels wrong – surely we should be able to unplug, reconnect and revive.  This weekend has been a lesson to me.


The lodge was totally perfect in every way possible, with attention to detail second to none.  Longlands is an exciting and enviable business  with a level of organisation that appears effortless but you really know it isn’t – let’s talk hard work and lots of lists (great tip Bella!).  They absolutely need to be congratulated in their efforts to provide the perfect place to unwind and relax.  It is truly amazing.



With a lake stocked with Trout, a fishing rod is made available for all to have a go.  It would appear that, on our trip, the least experienced were probably the most successful, isn’t it always the way? There are also two small rowing boats and a lovely jetty with two wooden chairs – idyllic surroundings.


You soon become aware that maybe there isn’t a need to check your phone with the relentless regularity you do everyday.  With the sun setting, a glass of champagne on the terrace, and a game of candle-lit charades waiting for you inside, you slowly begin to realise that, the world won’t stop if you don’t check your emails.
After just a couple of days, I began to feel appreciation for small things and my thoughts turned to not taking things for granted.