Monday, 2 April 2012

B is for Budleigh Salterton

B

Last month, I got a blogging award which asked for seven random facts as part of the deal.  The first factoid noted that I met my husband in Budleigh Salterton.  It is a place near and dear to my heart as a result. 

View of Budleigh, not including the vital Feathers pub

What, you may ask, was I doing in a sleepy Devon town?  Apart from the joke name and Noel Coward's rather scathing view of it as a honeymoon resort (see Blithe Spirit  for details), Budleigh Salterton has long been host to Imperial College's Operatic Society.  They descend on it a couple of times a year to take over the village hall and perform shows there.

I am no singer, but I can be a serviceable chorus member if I have to, and that year I was a fairy in Iolanthe.  A stationary fairy, as it happened, as I'd managed to trip over my fairy wand at a late rehearsal and torn a ligament.  Prancing being out of the question, I was adorned in ankle to knee tubigrip and spent most of the show perched on a toadstool.  Accident prone, y'see.

This accident proneness was a continuing theme.  As part of the opening night festivities, cast entertained the audience and local dignitaries with a finger buffet.  As an avid cook, I volunteered to help and constructed a vasty batch of sausage rolls.  Which then had to be delivered to the hall.  Which is when I limped out of the kitchen clutching a tray full of them and walked straight into an open window frame.  Window frame was made of metal and gouged a neat cut in my scalp.  Blood started to cascade.

At this point, an unknown hero in sunglasses put in an appearance, firmly removing the sausage rolls from me.  I was suitably grateful.  Didn't want to waste the sausage rolls after all.  After being swabbed down, I realised who he was.  Not unknown as it turned out.  A flautist in the band.  We had met briefly the previous evening and he had impressed me with his look of utter disdain as I limped to and fro.

Anyway, I set out to find him and thank him for his help.  This lead to some interesting conversation.  I expounded on fresco techniques.  He was fascinating about music and science fiction and generally made me laugh a lot.  We got on astonishingly well for two intensely shy people. 

We established that I failed to qualify as his dream woman on many important issues.  I can't eat fish, I smoke and I don't play a musical instrument.  He failed to fulfil my requirements in a partner by being employed, not undergoing long term treatment for mental illness and not needing me to change his life.  Obvious soulmates.

One week later he proposed.  It was a drunken moment, but we both had a sort of "actually, that's a damn fine idea" twang about it.  A month later, he proposed again and by the time the next Budleigh Salterton rolled around, we were married and have been ever since.

On an unrelated note, I've been getting notifications for comments that aren't appearing on the blog.  If you've posted something and I haven't replied, it's because I can't.  Not sure if this is anything to do with the vaunted new blogger interface or not, but something is awry.

26 comments:

  1. My god, woman, you're keen! Posting so early on day 2 ;) I think Devon is a beautiful part of the country, along with Cornwall, to name but two, of course.

    As for your phantom issue; mayhaps you have a ghost in the machine?

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    1. Got woken up early due to cat on head. Explains all I think :)

      Ghost in machine quite likely, but tis weird.

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  2. Such a cute story. I swore I'd never marry into the military and that I'd go for the geeky type who'd always know how to fix my computer and instead ended up with someone in the special forces and who watches football.

    When love happens, you can't resist I guess.

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  3. This is so sweet. Great story for the letter B.

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  4. Very cute story about meeting your husband!

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  5. Thank you all :)

    I didn't mention I was also in the process of deciding "never again" after a particularly disasterous four year relationship. The whole thing was a huge surprise to me. And to him.

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  6. Lovely - and very funny story. Stationary fairy, I love it.

    Sometimes people "click" even without meeting all the criteria on one another's checklist. Just think, if you weren't gimpy and hadn't slammed into that window... you could have missed out on true love!

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    1. So true. Lucky thing I tripped on my wand really.

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  7. I like that it was a vasty batch.

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  8. Great story. I'll be checking in the see what tales you have to tell for the rest of the month :)

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    1. I am a vertitable fount of strange tales :)

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  9. What a sweet and romantic story!! By the way the photo you posted reminds me of what Ocean Beach in San Francisco looks like, with the hill and everything. The only thing missing is the Cliff House at the top!

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  10. Loved it. The title possibilities are endless, "I Limped My Way into His Heart..." okay, that's all I got.

    Great story.

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  11. Wow. This is a gorgeous romantic story, adorably told. Well done.

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  12. Thank you all for the comments. I didn't think of it as romantic at all, I must admit.

    @ Beverly -
    "From tubigrip to Wedding Bells in one easy limp"?

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  13. What a nicely romantic story, although I don't know the joke about the name. I'm glad I dropped by and thanks for visiting my blog. Happy A-Z.
    Pam

    Quig Land
    A Pirate Looks Past Sixty
    Pirate Knitting

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  14. You totally right, in situations like that you have to save the food. Food is really important.

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    1. That was how I felt. He had the right priorities.

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  15. What a great story! I think tearing ligaments and cutting one's head open definitely qualify as unromantic, but oddly enough it's the inauspicious beginnings that seem to last the longest. :)

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  16. Ooh you made me go all shivery! What a sweet story! A total hero/damsel in distress/fairy story :) I love places like that with crazy names. I live in the East Midlands in England and you know you're lost when you're driving when the place names start getting really strange.. :) This was such a lovely post!

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    1. Glad you liked :)

      That area of the country is rich in names I find hilarious. Newton Poppleford, for one.

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    2. Thank you everyone for the wonderful comments on this one. They are much appreciated.

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  17. Hi Amanda .. I've always skirted past (fast!) Budleigh Salterton .. on the way to see the Pirates further West - what a great story .. so happy it always worked out .. cheers Hilary

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