Monday, 4 April 2011

I've got a brand new combine harvester....

I obviously don't but I was trying to think of a suitable title for today's blog!

I was in the deepest, darkest depths of Wiltshire for the weekend, in the village I lived in from the age of 2 until early 20s - Rushall.  My Gran still lives there so I venture back about 3 times a year. 

If you google Rushall, it takes you to a probably much bigger village 'up North.  My Rushall is really just a hamlet where there are no shops and you're very lucky if you see a bus once a month!  My school consisted of 32 children at most.  This made for a great education with lots of fun, nature walks, playing outside etc.  I smile when I tell the story of how when you are 7, you walk through the screen from the little kids classroom and are then a big kid!  I think I enjoyed my school years but it was a huge culture shock going from 32 children up to 600 or so at the age of 10 when I went to secondary school.  (I don't know if I was lucky or not but due to my birthday falling at a funny time and obviously because I was incredibly intelligent (!!!!!), I went to secondary school a year early).

A lot has changed in Rushall since I was small.  Our beautiful haunted house, located in a wood, with trout lakes, a river running through the bottom of the garden, and a hammock, got completely knocked down and rebuilt.  I wondered about the ghosts and worried for the tenants!  That house was so haunted, I could write a book on it.  The sound of babies crying coming from tvs that were turned off, lights turning on & off, my Katie Copycat flying across the room, and the little girl's voice saying "I'm 4" over Roger Daltrey's "I'm Free" track!  My second house in the village isn't recognisable these days either but there is so much more space for my two scooters that I owned back then!

Rushall is very, very pretty but a tough place to live when you're a teenager with no money and no transport.  My Lambretta gave me a lot of independence and I no longer had to rely on my poor Grandad to take me places and come out in the middle of the night to pick me up from Mod Nights in the back of beyond.  Rushall is still a tough place to live if you don't have transport & I can't see that changing unfortunately. 

If you happen to be heading between Swindon & Salisbury (or vice versa), take a detour through Rushall, have a look round the pretty little church, have a photo taken in the stocks, and...say hi to my Gran.

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