Friday, 4th April, 2014.

Yesterday was another day to remember.   We drove about two-hundred and twenty miles, and crossed five of the old counties.

These were Old Cardiganshire (now Ceredigion), Radnorshire, Herefordshire, Shropshire and, finally, into Staffordshire.   Our trip was to see Rosie’s brother and sister and to wallow in the glories of Wolverhampton.

Yes, I know that reference was sarcastic, but – even with the heavy mist and fog blotting out much of the landscape – the journey and the visit were lovely.   The heavy fog hung on the heights as we drove the narrow road from Cwmystwyth to Rhayader, but that only gave an extra atmosphere to the Cambrian Mountains.

From Rhayader onwards, we noticed that the lower lands were a little greener than on our side of the Cambrians.   Hawthorn leaves (which I still call “bread and butter leaves”) were really showing in the hedgerows.   Blackthorn flowers abounded.   And, especially across Shropshire, the gean trees were showing their startling white blossoms.

Wildflowers were everywhere, of course.   Especially noted were masses of scurvy-grass flowering for miles and miles along the edges of our roads.

Having arrived in “Ode ‘Ampton”, we took Terry and June up to the crematorium on Bushbury Hill where the ashes of our parents – Rosie’s and mine – are scattered.   Brother-in-law Tony, who passed on last year, has his ashes up there, too.

It was not the sad affair of remembrance one might expect:  lots and lots of bright flowers decorated the memorial plaques.

We dropped Terry and June back at their homes and drove back – the mist lifting slowly – via Shrewsbury, Newtown, Llanidloes and Devil’s Bridge.   I felt, as I always feel, relief (or whatever the emotion is) when we crossed the national border back into Wales at a place called Middletown.

Wales is my homeland.   However, the trip held so many memories and memories are an important part of one’s life, be they good or bad.   I find mine are, in the main, good.

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