Our first outing of the year was a special occasion in memory our dear friend, Kell Ryan, who died last week after a long illness. We were really pleased to be joined by Kell’s daughter, Sinead, and determined to make this a celebratory, rather than solemn occasion; a wake on wheels. The day was sunny, but freezing, so any tears were likely to become icicles.
It was a good turnout: Sinead and Andrew, plus Maurice, Sandra, John B, Rod, John from Dunmow and Brian. Maurice had planned a route around some of our old haunts, setting off from Great Chishill at the slightly later time of 10.00 and heading out to Buntingford for a coffee stop and then back to The Pheasant for lunch. At least that was the plan . . .
But the plan soon went out the window; and it was all John Bagrie’s fault. He invited us to stop off at his place in Sandon, whereupon Lyn plied us with coffee, sticky treats and champagne, plus, of course, a beer for John himself. We toasted Kell while we thawed out around the Aga. We also agreed this was definitely the best coffee stop in Hertfordshire. Maybe we should return every Thursday?
Then it was back to The Pheasant where we were joined by Sinead’s mum, Glen, plus Lyn, Rod & Cath, Vernon, John T & Bridget. Simon and Ollie served up a delicious lunch and, of course, we raised another glass to Kell.
Thanks to Maurice and Andrew for planning the day and to John and Lyn for their hospitality.
And a special thanks to Kell for his friendship, wisdom, tall stories and happy memories.