Thursday, 1 March 2012

The Cotswolds - St Davids Day 2012

Was it really 2010 the last time I blogged? Ooh dear, I had better keep more up to date.
2011 went with a blur. The highlights of the year were skiing in the Swiss Alps at Wengen beneath the Jungfrau in Winter 2010 / 2011 and going to the USA last summer where I went with a friend to New York City and Washington, DC. Separate blogs will be written for those.
Anyway, my CI journey seem to be more settled. I have stopped wearing it in the places where my CI does not work and where I was 'pressurised' to be 'hearing' when I cannot be as I am profoundly deaf from birth and then get picked on / left out cos I cannot achieve that 'hearing' status which is to understand speech. I only wear my CI in the places and environments where it is ok to still be deaf with CI and where the inability to understand speech does not matter and/or where the person I am with is extremely deaf aware and with lip-reading and CI, I can follow what they say and have opportunity to ask them to repeat where necessary.
Anyway, I am typing today as I had the day off from work (booked annual leave) and with beautiful weather (after fog had lifted), I took an opportunity to explore the Cotswolds!! Despite the fact that I often travel / drive through and they are right on my doorstep, I had not properly stopped there to have a proper look round for many years. I decided to explore by travelling by bus.
My first stop was Northleach, a quaint beautiful old wool and market town in the Cotswolds. Here I had half an hour to change buses. There was not alot to see, as the town was so small, I stayed in the Market Place area close to the bus stop.
The Market Square was surrounded by very traditional shops and old inns, all in that golden coloured brick of the Cotswolds. There was a butchers, a grocers, a post office, a chemist and a bakers. It wasn't market day today so Market Place was used as a car park.
I watched the life that goes on in this quaint little town.
Most of the people who walked about were of the retired type. There was one or two Mothers with a kid in a pushchair but it was mainly older people who were taking their time in the stroll in the Market Square or sat on the bench next to the main road to admire the daffodils that were about to come to life.
It seemed like everyone knew everyone. The body language showed how people always addressed each other or have a joke. I stood there also admiring the 'sounds' of this quaint town. This I had never experienced before and was amazed at how far some sound could travel when there is less urbanised hustle and bustle noise going on. The sounds I picked up was possibly a blackbird as it was a high pitched melodic type, but I could not locate where he was. There was the noise of the odd car passing by or manuoevring in the car park. The old church chimed on the half hour and footsteps of people on the other side of the Market Square could be heard!! Then there was two couples (one couple with a dog) suddenley greeting each other in the car park. They stood there for a good 15 minutes and one thing I noticed was how loud they could be heard. I didnt have to 'strain' my ear or turn up any volume to hear their chatter in the car park within Market Place. Their talking seemed loud and seemed to be amplified by bouncing off the walls of the shops that surround Market Place. There were no other sounds. Their talking was so loud and clear. I could not understand what they were saying but thats due to me having no pathway to understand speech. Had I been able to understand speech, I am sure I would have picked out what they were saying. But I couldnt anyway.
Following Northleach, I visited Bourton on the Water. No CI moment there, and not even heard the ducks... perhaps they were quiet today? However I could hear their flying and flapping their wings in the water though. Following these I went on to Stow on the Wold and Moreton in Marsh. No more CI moments there.