Friday saw me venture north to visit my son Jonathon and fiancee Jenny’s new home in the suburbs of Thirsk. A town which when I last visited, in December 2019, yours truly idiosyncratically described as follows in earlier prose:-

An enchanting North Yorkshire market town – Without doubt the most beguiling place I’ve visited which’s an anagram of riskth……… Although, if truth be told, it’s the only town I’ve ever visited bearing that particular word structure.

That being said, I’m pretty sure if I’d the opportunity to visit Sithrk, Kristh or Tiskhr they’d not ‘hold a candle’ to the captivating Yorkshire borough …… Regardless of how much the Sithrk Tourist Board protest to the contrary.”

Although admittedly (and unapologetically) absurd, my comments were meant as a compliment to the alluring town mentioned twice within the Domesday Book and on three occasions in my early 2020 tome Words.

As a kid Thirsk was always a stop off point on familial journeys from Gateshead to my grandparents holiday bungalow at Reighton Gap. The first treat of our annual holiday a splendid Friday fish and chip tea from a knockout chippy situated close to the cobbled town square. From memory the takeaway shop, just off the market square, adorning a royal blue glossed door and lower windowsill.

Admittedly, these were simple and rather unremarkable episodes. However, this routine further raised already elevated brio levels manifesting from thoughts of a forthcoming coastal vacation. Events ingraining a great fondness for the engaging town within the Hamilton district.

Little did I know during those 1970’s summer evenings inelegantly gorging my way through a fish supper in my dad’s Ford Cortina car that half a century later my son’d live in this enchanting borough a few miles east of the A1.

Although, bereft of any soothsaying powers (that I’m aware of), I’d suggest my inability to predict my offsprings future move to Thirsk isn’t overly unsurprising…… Or indeed the idea, at that juncture in the ageing process, if I were to be blessed with offspring.

Anyhow, upon completion of our 50 minute drive north yesterday, Jonathon, Jenny and their petit cat Lottie made my mother and me very welcome upon setting foot in their new residence. The warmth of their hospitality extending to a fine buffet lunch, along with a guided tour of chez Strachan/Cochrane. Good conversation and frequent dollops of laughter further enhancing the cordial brew.

Footnote – When I say Lottie made us welcome I actually mean that during our tarry she didn’t attempt to bite or claw me…… Sometimes, it the small wins that make all the difference.

My mum Maggie seemed particularly chirpy upon seeing her grandson and his fiancees new abode. Speaking from her ‘glass always full’ behavioural baseline, throughout our visit she went into “That’s nice!” overdrive when commenting on any room, piece of furniture, item of smorgasbord food or cup of tea.

Maggie was right, they all were nice. However I can’t help feel, such is my mum’s determination to appear nice, she’d have made identical positive conclusions had my progeny and his beau purchased a midden as their new residence.

It was lovely to see my boy and his girl yesterday at their delightful new locale. In particular, it was heartwarming to witness the esprit levels this move has appeared to introduce into their existence…… Good luck in your new home Jonny and Jenny!…… A great choice!

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