Dear Joel, Dear Anna. Part 4.


28 September 2022

After 2 full years the Pandemic is finally over! Life is back to normal and nobody really cares if
they even have covid these days (lucky because Joel’s mate, Reuben, gets it weekly). Don’t get too relaxed though… we are on the brink of world war 3, a global reccession and energy costs might not let us put the heating on this winter. My advice, just smile and wave, aint nothing we can do thats gonna change it, so switch off the news, and go play with you mates.

We had an incredible summer of sun and beach weather… no great surf for Joel really (until the last month, where you averaged about 5 hours a day in the water). Some are calling it the best summer in memory, and we hit the highest temp ever recorded in UK history (41 degrees). Kimmy even surfs now! She can catch her own waves, paddle out, and even manage a cheeky cross step if the moment is right. 

Anna, you got some quality time with Floss and Nico (her new besties) over the summer holidays and have been sewing up a storm with your sewing teacher Sarah. Your mom would be so proud! Thank your granny one day for making it happen! You’ve joined youth club and demolished the series of books School for Good and evil. You consume more hours of television than I knew possible. You’re becoming a beautiful young lady, your legs are ridiculously long, no idea where those came from cause your mother and I were both shorties. Sometimes i see you and I cant believe I had any part in making you… if you werent my twin when
it comes to just about every mannerisim you carry. 

Joel, you cannot sit still. Boy you have made this year count, from painting enough landscapes to have your own exhibition, to learning about 100 rock songs on the guitar, taking the most wickets at Braunton cricket club (and earning The coach’s player of the year!) , catching the bus with your mates to skate the half pipe in Woolacombe and the park in Croyde. There is rarely a moment where you are not moving. if you are sitting still, you are playing xbox. And you got your first job! That made me really proud. Serving icecreams at the Downend cafe and cleaning tables, asking for more shifts, saving your money (well half of it anyway) its been a big year for you. You’re turning into a little man.

Despite the odd wobble, England now feelslike home. We have found our groove in this little Braunton, this quite little hamlet farm town. We have our routines and our favourite places. Friday arvos at Crow Point when the tide is high, for a beach braai, and some mud baths. Saunton family surfs, Croyde early mornings before school or late evening sessions till its dark. The cricket club for Joel’s practice on a Tuesday (cheap beers and chips!) Kylie and G’s for braai and some 360 nose scopes on the VR goggles. 

We’ve explored a bit. We’ve surfed the wavepool! Visited the Natural History Meuseum with Richy, Science Museum with Josh, St Ives and the southern tip of Cornwall whilst staying in a bus! Bude and Widemouth with Tammy and Millie. We had visits from old friends! Anna’s old bestie Leila and her family came to visit, Cian, Willow and Lance and Debs. Granny and Popo spent a month spoiling you and fell in love with North Devon. Gav and Nix and your little cousins also spent a week. 

We got a kitten, who quickly became a cat, who quickly became the most vicious serial killer in the burrows… frequently bringing us gifts of freshly murdered shrews, mice and the odd bird. His affection is mostly for Kimmy, but we still snatch the odd bit of love.

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