Yesterday Max and I took one of our brief times out, time we set aside for checking up on each other and on us. As we had a morning, instead of a more normal lunch time, so we didn’t go to Fotheringhay this time; the fields were also full of fog as we set out, so we abandoned our ‘early walk and talk’ plan and headed into Oundle instead.
Oundle is one of those laces that isn’t far away and yet we never go to it. We moan constantly about wishing we had a town like Buckingham or Towcester near by and yet actually we have 2. We go to Stamford occasionally but we just somehow never get round to going to Oundle. *rolls whole head*
After a coffee and a chat about how to try and reclaim the unholy mess that has developed around Freddie’s birthday, something I’m so resentful about that after desperately wanting a lovely day, I’ve failed to plan anything, we headed off into the town to have a good look about. I ended up chatting to a chap in a decor place about small business and shops and buying and Fran’s jewellery making and all those things, which was lovely and welcoming, while Max explored the market and the food shops. Although my conversation revealed that the shops have had a downturn in the last 18 months, the 2 butchers, the green grocers, the bakers and the various boutiques all seemed to be thriving well enough and the market would fill any gaps. It had a cheese stall and a spice stall and various other things and apparently there is a farmers version of it every other Saturday which is also well supported.
Max and I thought we could give shopping there a go once a week (he can go on his motorbike and bring a week of meat, bread and veg back we think) and if it works out financially viable then we’ll try getting just basics delivered by a supermarket and do all the fresh stuff from Oundle. We’ve got a decent local Co-op for incidental stuff so we should do okay I think. Oundle isn’t exactly local in some ways, (it is in a different county!) but it is the closest small town to us with decent parking and a good range of shops which isn’t too busy. As an added bonus, one baker, butcher and the greengrocer have banded together as an online venture and will deliver if we want, which will be great in the winter or when we are really busy.
So that feels like we’ve made a decent start towards improving how we shop; I loved that I got to chat to a shopkeeper about the venture as it happened too. A very friendly little town indeed. I hope enough people keep using it so it continues to feel as great as it does.
[This post follows on from this one, in which we pledged to start shopping as we wished others shopped]