Patsington and I spent much of the last 24 hours pretending to be toffs. Yes, we went to one of those "hidden Ireland" guest houses that work on the false premise that you are just welcome guests of the owners, and are not actually paying nearly a hundred quid each just to sleep beneath an Adam ceiling and nearly fifty more to dine by candlelight. But it's pretty much worth it, just for the pure and blissful pleasure of an afternoon spent lolling on an ancient and comfortable couch in front of a roaring log fire in a delicious Georgian drawing room, looking out the window to see misty acres of rolling fields and trees straight of out a Lorrain painting.
The house was fantastic, a real-life Longbourne, and it was just so good to go somewhere beautiful and do absolutely sod all except talk and laugh and drink tea and read. The rooms were stuffed with books (and our room was about the size of my entire house) and the vast and rambling grounds were packed with animals - two extremely bold and cheeky dogs, two charming donkeys, a very sulky fluffy cat, and a team of ducks, chickens and geese. And a very large peacock. We dined - five courses, no less - at one table with our fellow guests and then ending up sitting around the fire with several of them and one of the owners, drinking excellent wine and talking enthusiastically until about one in the morning. And then in the morning we came down and were fed a gorgeous breakfast before strolling around and hanging out with the animals (which involved verbally chastising the dogs when they decided to try and impress us by herding the donkeys).
Patsington and I of course secretly feel that this is the sort of life we were born to lead, and that really, we DESERVE to live like Edwardian aristocrats. Sadly, life is not fair, and so we are back in 21st century suburbia (which to be perfectly honest is more than our lazy spoiled selves deserve), dreaming of a life where tea appears by magic in front of a roaring fire, you can go for a mile-long walk in your own garden, and when you look out at the night sky you can see every single star.