Last Friday it was The Lakes. Today it was Chester. There is no doubt, Team Jones is rocking the north west!
We decided to use the five Fridays before Dr J starts her new job – the day Miss J is not in nursery – to have some family days out. Next Friday we are taking some dear friends out for lunch in Liverpool at our favourite restaurant, The Arts School, and then the Friday after it looks like Lytham is calling. The last Friday of the set is still up for grabs.
Frankly we don’t need an excuse to spend time together but it has been fun to discuss the different options for our team trips and to combine some of our favourite places with some new ones for Dr J and Miss J to try out – testing my local knowledge.
Our visit to Chester today was sweet. I spent a couple of hours clearing some emails and doing some work and then we headed out, arriving in time for lunch, a leisurely walk inside the city walls – it never lets you down; always full of character and quirkiness – and some shopping and sightseeing. News of Philippe Coutinho’s transfer request didn’t spoil a lovely day, although Miss J was particularly disgusted that he didn’t have the decency to respect the club and manager enough with a face to face request like a grown up, but instead cravenly hid behind an email.
On our way back to the car a touching moment. At the crossroads of two of main pedestrian streets, outside the Parish Church, there were two musicians playing the guitar and singing. They were providing us all with a different arrangement and take on The Beach Boys classic, ‘God Only Knows’. It struck me that when you hear a song you know really well – and often like a lot as I do with that song – a new version or something that sounds different – it makes you listen that bit harder, perhaps hearing the words properly for the first time in a while. That happened today.
I was walking hand in hand in hand with my two glorious girls. Dr J was carrying the Disney shop bag that contained Aoife’s latest princess dress- a reward for something done this week – I will spare you the details but parents will appreciate it perhaps more than non-parents as it related to some successful toilet activity! I had on my shoulder the bag containing the days snacks, water and colouring book and crayons. We had just been laughing together as Aoife was chatting ten to the dozen. Joy all over our faces. We then hit the music and I heard the chorus as clearly as I ever have before;
“God only knows what I’d be without you,
God only knows what I’d be without you ”
I looked either side of me – to the little hands resting in mine. No other words required. Thank you Brian Wilson. Thank you Chester. You’ve been a great audience.