Another year and another Birthday – as Ann celebrated her special day today! It was a day with friends, food, cards and gift!
8.35am: After a quick ‘Birthday Bacon Sarny’, Ann began opening her presents and cards. Soon after, the ritual was briefly interrupted (in a good way) by a surprise video call from Nicki and Richard wishing her ‘happy birthday’. Then, just before 9, Sean (with little Athena) stopped by to wish Ann well and drop off another birthday gift.
11.02am: Then, at just after 11 it was off to nearby Oakham for more celebrations with a planned return to Hitchen’s Barn for Ann’s Birthday lunch. On arrival in the town, the weather was atrocious, but there was just time to look around and grab some fresh flowers for Ann from the Saturday Market. It was now blowing a gale, and so we abandoned any further plans to wander round the town and headed back to the car to lose the flowers. Next stop? The Pub! 😊
12.31pm: Nick and Celina met us at the nearby Lord Nelson for a ‘swift pre-lunch half’😉. Initially, this ‘old fashioned’ boozer was deserted, but it soon filled up! After a quick catch-up, it was on to the main event.
12.55pm: Over the past few years, Hitchen’s Barn has quickly become our ‘go to’ eatery for high quality food complemented by imaginative menus, together with excellent service and well-trained staff! Last time we were here was back in December 2022 for our 38th Anniversary, and we were all looking forward to returning! We decided to arrive slightly earlier than our 1.15 slot mainly down to the remaining minutes left on our ticket in the car-park. They took our coats and we were soon seated and perusing their mouthwatering menus!
As usual, there were two menus on offer where it was easy to mix-and-match. Ann chose the Creamy Lincolnshire Poacher & Red Leicester Souffle followed by Breast of Chicken with Fondant Potato, Creamed Leaks & Morel Mushrooms. I opted for the Cauliflower Soup & (rather ginormous) Welsh Rarebit Crouton and then the Fillet of Cod with Herb Crust, Crushed New Potatoes and Mustard Sauce. As has become the norm, the food was packed with flavour and attractively presented. It really WAS good to be back – what a real treat for our tastebuds! 😊😋
The restaurant was super-busy and somewhat noisier than we remember, but it didn’t stop us enjoying every mouthful. We were all stuffed by the time they tempted us with Desserts. All-in-all Hitchen’s Barn had done us proud and ticked all the boxes making it a great birthday celebration for Ann.
2.35pm: We walked back to the car-park (in the pouring rain!) and then said our goodbyes to Nick & Celina. It’s not too long before we see them again, as they’ll be round at ours in late May for a meal with Ralph & Karen.
3.17pm: It was a straightforward drive home, where the weather shifted from a cold wind with torrential rain to bright sunshine, by the time we pulled up on the drive.
3.55pm: Trish dropped in with presents for Ann, and we spent an hour-or-so catching up on her news.
It had been a great day (in spite of the ‘variable’ weather!) and Ann had received some great cards and presents. A relaxed evening followed (not forgetting to put the clocks forward!) 👍
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