LESLEY KEATING: Goodbye dainty heels, hello muddy Wellingtons

We've been in our temporary cottage home for a week now and living out in the country is an eye-opener.

Sunday, 26th November 2017, 7:54 pm
Lesley fears for her expensive heels in the countryside - so she's swapped them for ancient wellies

We’ve been in our temporary cottage home for a week now and living out in the country is an eye-opener.

The local pub is only open from Wednesday to Sunday.

There are lots of nice footpaths but I’m too scared to explore in case some chap in a Barbour and wellies points a 12-bore at me, hollering ‘Get offa moi land!’

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The geese on the village pond clearly have no fear. They strut about defiantly with plenty of attitude. (I’m giving them a wide berth as I’m sure I read somewhere that geese are dangerous. I’m not taking any chances).

Instead of my usual Whistles and Zara, I’m currently living in black skinny jeans and jumpers.

The fact that I bought with me a leopard-print fake-fur jacket and my new cobalt blue Jigsaw coat is hysterically laughable in hindsight.

My favourite footwear is no longer pointy black suede ankle boots, Valentino-inspired heels or white-and-gold Stan Smiths; it’s now ancient – and increasingly muddy – Hunter wellies.

And instead of a handbag, my accessory of choice is now…. a Maglite torch.

It’s to a) see where I’m heading and b) more importantly, see where the dog’s got to! It’s like stepping into a black void outside.

It’s not been without challenges. Milly is pathologically terrified of the staircase for some bizarre reason.

At home, she bounds up ours several times a day, even sleeps on it when the mood takes her. Here, she won’t even set foot on it.

The internet has a mind of its own so we never have a clue if it is going to work.

I’m particularly proud of getting to grips with the AGA without an instruction book, instead of my usual built-in double-oven and microwave.

And, rather than flicking on the Hive App, putting on the heating now consists of Mike labouring over a wood-burner – which is actually so efficient that by 9pm we’re red as boiled lobsters.

But, despite everything, I’m really enjoying it.

It’s certainly an experience, particularly as until a week ago, the only Country Life I knew about was a pat of butter!


I’ve just heard fairy-tale Sleeping Beauty for ‘teaching children it’s criticised acceptable to kiss a sleeping woman against her wishes’.

What next? Sleeping Beauty becomes gender fluid? Isn’t it time we got over ourselves?

In being so easily affronted, we could completely lose our identities.

For the record, I don’t call myself ‘Ms’. I’m married and proud of it.

I don’t have a problem if anyone, regardless of sex, opens a door for me.

And, shock, horror, I’m not offended if I get a wolf-whistle on the street either!

We should celebrate our differences. Isn’t it just as offensive to males or females who want to be recognised as such to be neutered by political correctness?


Surprise. Surprise. killer, Jon Venables, is Jamie Bulger’s evil back behind bars again for the second time since his release in 2002.

He, and partner-in-crime Robert Thompson, were both given sparkly new £250,000 identities and somewhere to live, courtesy of tax-payers, to ‘protect’ them on release.

If reoffending, they’d only need give their new identities so police would be blissfully ignorant of their history.

Can someone remind me exactly why we go to these extents to protect such vile, dangerous monsters?

If someone moved into my neighbourhood with that type of past, I’d prefer to know about it.

What gives them the right to all the advantages of security and protection poor little Jamie was cruelly denied?