Staycation 2020 – Day Two – The Vyne

While many place still remain closed the National Trust has opened the grounds of a number of its properties. In order to limit numbers you have to go on to their website the Friday before and make a booking. Given that we are off this week we’d decided that it would be nice to go and stretch our legs at a couple of local NT places.

Helen and I both chose a place we’d like to go and The Vyne in Hampshire was Helen’s choice. I wanted to go to Cliveden but with so few tickets being available for each time slot (ten per half an hour) and that so many National Trust members are early risers the slots we wanted were already taken by 7am! So it is The Vyne today and Basildon Park on Thursday – weather permitting.

You had to arrive within 10 minutes of your booked slot and, of course, we arrived bang on 10:30. Someone was at the gate to check our names off a list and then we were in. To be honest I have never been to The Vyne at 10:30 on a Tuesday before so I don’t know how empty the car park normally would have been but today there were less than 30 cars in total.

We still saw a surprising number of people on the walk round. Judging by the cars on the adjoining road it appears as if some people had sneaked in through the back door, so to speak. This seems a little unfair as it deprives the National Trust of the much needed entrance fee.

It is always quiet as you walk through the woods but this time seemed especially so as there was no noise for planes flying overhead and no children running and playing. All you could hear was the sound of bird song. It really was beautiful.


You would have thought that having someone drive into the back of your car would have been a stressful event but compared to the afternoon I had it pales into insignificance. The intention had been to potter in the garden but I very quickly found myself sucked into issues that were happening at work and which needed my attention.

On the whole working for a small business is much more preferable than my experiences in large corporates. However, there are occasions when the sheer number of people at your beck and call in a large company is a positive boon. Holidays are an excellent example of when just a few more hands would be useful. There have been a number of occasions over the years where I have been on the phone from far flung locations providing needed support. Today was no different except I was in my garden rather than in a villa in Florida.

Given the point of a holiday is to unwind from the stresses of the job today didn’t help me achieve that. I just hope that it doesn’t bleed into tomorrow too much.