mumsnetBack along, my family and I swapped a house for a three-acre field in Devon and a leaky caravan where we lived off-grid for two years. Sadly, we failed to get the planning permission we needed to stay. We are now back within four walls, with a proper loo and everything in a cottage in Dartmoor. So this is now a blog about living ethically amid a fabulous landscape with our home educated kids while we adjust to being 'normal' - for a while... and what we plan to do with our land next

Monday, 9 January 2012

Giving it some welly

I can't help but notice that young urban bright things are wearing wellies about town these days, which magically catapults me from the frumpy middle-aged person clad in shapeless outdoor garmets I thought I was into something fabulously fashionable - or possibly not.

My wellies and I seldom part company, to the deep embarrassment of my daughter. She's eight, you see. Anyway, such is the attachment that I have to my wellies that I often find to my surprise that they are adorning my feet in places where other footwear might be more appropriate.

Just such an occasion was Christmas Eve, which is also Gully's birthday. We decided to celebrate by eating out and it wasn't until we were waiting to be seated that I noticed that both he and I were still wearing wellies - and muddy ones to boot.

Still, it was just mud. We're not so hardened as the three equestrian-minded ladies we once encountered in a well-known fast-food establishment from whose riding boots permeated a steady and strong waft of horses' doo-doos. The restaurant was busy and the contest for seats fierce, but around those ladies the tables were empty as they tucked into their burgers oblivious to the impact they were having on other diners' olfactory systems and appetites.

While this level of insouciant boot wearing is clearly something to aspire to, I do sometimes feel a twinge of self-consciousness and see myself, as I follow a high-heeled, manicured woman around the supermarket, for the shambles I must generally look.

Still, the beauty of living in rural Devon is that I am not alone. 'Joining the army?' my brother-in-law recently asked as I stopped by while wearing Gully's trousers to collect laundry from my ever supportive sister.

'If my 20-year-old self could see me now,' I returned. 'In the old man's army-surplus trousers and muddy wellies. I've got to go shopping in Crediton dressed like this!'

'Well,' said brother-in-law, surveying my attire critically – 'you'll blend right in'.


  1. Loved this post. You've inspired me to write a blog (http://housewithnoname.blogspot.com) about how I've swapped my posh city shoes for a pair of black plimsolls. Once you've started wearing something comfy it's very hard to stop!

  2. I am loving those plimsolls, Emma - not quite enough mud on 'em for my liking, but they are fine footwear indeed. See Emma's blog at http://www.housewithnoname.blogspot.com/2012/01/choosing-speed-over-style-my-rocket-dog.html