I’m so deliriously happy up here I almost never want to come home. I’ve written every morning and then gone out for long walks every afternoon, across the hills and the moors, dodging cows, taking more photographs of mushrooms and a rogue frog I nearly stood on in the woods near the cottage a couple of days ago. I’ve romped around Castle Howard, I actually gasped when I saw the ruins of Rievaulx Abbey, I bought a rabbit from a farm shop and stewed it for my supper. (I ate it two nights in a row and then slightly couldn’t face it on night three, so had pasta instead.) Yesterday I went to Pickering War Weekend, when the whole town goes back in time and thousands of visitors descend dressed as if the 1940s – uniforms, land army overalls, nylons, vibrant lipstick and so on. I even saw a small girl dressed as a WREN. Then I went to vespers at Ampleforth and sat inhaling incense while the monks chanted their psalms. And THEN, ignoring today’s rain, I went out for a 12-mile walk across the moors and decided I need new walking boots since mine started squelching about an hour in. Not ideal. Anyway, a few choice pictures for you and now I need to go have a hot bath.