Home to Sarah and I is the quaint Lancashire village of Whalley. Surrounded by the Ribble Valley’s lush green grazing land, the ruins of a former monastic abbey, and country lanes which are shared by motorist and equestrienne alike, Whalley is where Mrs. Miniver would have lived had she been a Lancasterian.
Due in large part to the dictates of our current seasonal climate, my daily garb often consists of a pair of corduroy slacks, turtleneck shirt and a weather-repellent hooded coat, topped off by a trusty felt hat that I picked-up in the Yorkshire town of Kirkby Lonsdale. Noting that I resemble the local landed gentry, my father-in-law has begun referring to me as the Duke of Whalley.
While going about our business along Whalley’s high street on this brisk, yet sunny Saturday morning, an automobile pulled alongside and it’s two occupants asked for directions to the abbey. With the knowledge and authority of a native, I helpfully pointed these visitors to our village in the right direction. In between her bouts of laughter, the Duchess of Whalley informed this recent arrival from America that he had given excellent directions to the couple visiting his dukedom. I guess I am finally settling in.