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China Girl blog 11th April 2019

As time marches on, the echoes of past centuries fill the air, as the warmth of April comes and goes. Cothay is like a window in another world. Time passes slowly, as we long for lovely May.

The Tearoom, remodelled by Derrick, looks very professional. Derrick, a great perfectionist, would have like to have done more, Ma had great difficulty restraining him; but as usual, it’s all a question of cash! We hope the Environmental Health lady will give her approval. Jackie made her usual delicious cakes, whilst Ma sourced some sour dough bread for the open sandwiches. The salads have been greatly improved by Ma’s new spiral toy, which she found in Waitrose. It produces long, thin strips of vegetables such as courgettes, carrots, cucumber and beetroot – as thin as spaghetti, making the mixed leaves of the salads look inviting and delicious.

On the first Sunday in April, we as usual opened for the season. Despite the rather cold, damp, dreary day, there were quite a few people in the garden and house. Lin, one of our Tour Guides is no longer able to guide on Sunday mornings, so we are training two new guides – Peter who lives in the Coach House at Cothay, and Catherine who lives nearby. They joined the morning tour with Lin and went round again with Avril in the afternoon. There is a great deal to take in.

To add to the trauma of opening, Caroline Willis and her team of actors and camera crew arrived at 8am. As there were two house tours, they had to dodge in and out of the house whilst filming. Caroline borrowed from a neighbour a large grey horse, which Ed Macliam, the actor had to ride up and down the drive. He looked amazing, very elegantly dressed with high riding boots. The horse was about eighteen hands, so Ed had to mount it using our step ladder. All the visitors loved watching, especially as he is such a Ladies Man! They spent all day filming, leaving at 7pm; poor team, they were exhausted, as was  Mother.

Slowly springing into life in the garden are the many plants and shrubs; the charming yellow-flowered Corylopsis  and the sweetly-scented Virburnum.

The days slip by as the joy of spring grows slowly stronger, and the green, green grass in the fields covers our land.