This excursion began, as per usual with every muscled strained and tightened to the max as I held the wheel of our tiny Toyota only occasionally, and more naturally I might add, the left hand slipping to the gear shift hoping not to slip the gears. Standards are very popular here and much less expensive to rent. I thought that was compelling reason enough to be economizing and not extravagant as my wife would usually prefer. But apparently her muscles were tighter than mine when she tearfully said, “You’ve known me for 36 years, so you should know!”
“Know what?” I wisely said only to myself. As we went along, she explained that she would expect me to know how nervous it made her for me to drive in Britain and how I should have paid the extra money to get an automatic as that would be one less thing for her to stress about. And I thought I was a male hero for economizing. Venus and Mars.
Our marriage is still intact and I didn’t hit anything at all except for a small rabbit for which I am very sorry. It wasn't the rabbit that bothered her.
Back to the quiet. Our inn at Three Cocks (the proprietor told us that some overly sensitive Americans prefer to call it “Three Roosters”), was so quiet with its thick stone walls and modern windows inside the thick casement of the older window. And there was not a sheep to be seen or heard for at least a quarter of a mile!