so Maude and I drove to Brighton this week, partly to catch up with friends, and partly to let Maude get some experience of driving on motorways. I do remember how frightening it is even thinking about driving on motorways and I think that its actually got worst with the amount of lorries now delivering all the time. typically the navigator took us all the way on the M25, which is definitely the worst road that I have been on. didn’t help that we were in a mini which made us feel like sardines between all those overtaking gigantic vehicles! anyhow, we managed to get there and back with only a few hiccups, not a great mother and daughter bonding time driving 5 hours on such heavy roads ! when we got there my friends took me to lovely Stanmer Park, only 15 mins drive out of Brighton, but beautiful woodlands and open lands and we walked the dogs. there is a country house, church, walled garden, but I loved seeing the community gardens – allotments, flowers from Hearts and Flowers who have an allotment there, and then there was a hidden garden which has taken over 20 years to cultivate, which was so spiritual – a dome of twigs which has grown perfectly into a perfect geodesic , walls made of twigs and branches, small shrines of stones…. it was like an Andy Goldsworthy piece. our countryside is so vast and beautiful, there is always something new to discover. Quince is another of my favourite shops selling flowers and some small gifts and of course there is Tidystreet where I am now buying all my lovely white dresses from – its as though Florence is choosing them especially for me.