It was over two years ago now that I picked my daughter and I up and moved to the South Coast of the UK full of hope. I wanted to settle into a slower paced life than the busy, smoky mess of where we lived in London. I wanted to give my daughter a whole lot of wild and for myself, I hoped for quiet and peace to reflect on hitting my mid 30's as a single parent. It's fair to say we've achieved all of these and in doing so found a love of nature that is quite unparalleled to anything in our lives.
It's kind of hard not to stop and gasp at the often surprising changes that we see around us each day. Our cottage its tucked neatly into a landscape filled with farms, rolling hills and sea. My daughter and I love to snuggle up inside on blustery days and laze in our pyjamas on weekend mornings but nothing beats pulling on outdoor clothes and embracing the wildness of it all. I often laugh that my daughter hears the outdoors call and gets stir crazy at the sound of it. I know exactly how she feels.
2018 brings new horizons though and we are on the move again. We're so excited to be heading North and while this place shaped us, I know it's done the work we needed it to do. What we take with us is an incredible respect for nature and the uniqueness of each season. As I prepare my goodbyes, it seemed fitting that last weekend, I took part in Foreadventure's last 'Forage and Feast' of 2017. I will certainly treasure those cosy memories of a group of strangers exclaiming in joy at the bounty you can find on our coast.
I featured Jade and Dan of Foreadventure some time ago for the podcast and since then, we've been firm friends. This is the third of their events I've taken part in, my favourite being the family adventure day with my daughter this Summer. Jade and Dan have created a special mix of awe, wonder and practical skills that show the best of all we can enjoy when we step outside our doors and into a little more wild.
If I was going to say my goodbyes in anyway to this beautiful Jurassic Coast, I couldn't think of a better way to do it. On this last feast as a local, I brought along my girlfriend, who I'll be moving to be with. The warm and accepting reception we enjoyed as we walked up to the group made me feel nothing but heartfelt gratitude that in life there are people who just want to share their passions and knowledge. We foraged, we all swapped stories around a fire and ate some of the most delicious seasonal food I've eaten in a long while. No one bat an eyelid at the giggling girls in the corner, delighted to be sharing an evening with special friends.
Make a note of Foreadventure's 2018 schedule of events if you have a bucket list or special treat you want to book for someone else. This post isn't sponsored, simply a warm expression of gratitude as I feel glad for good friends, good scenery and exciting new directions in life.