What a lovely weekend.

Huge thanks to Gill for the driving – you know how much we appreciate it!

So – Saturday – up early, into town, releasing my 5,000th book (in total, not wildies) as I went. We drove to Hay via the Frankley services, where Gill and I freaked each other out, we released some books and there was a fire alarm (may or may not have been related). Got to Hay before lunch, checked in at the lovely The First guesthouse – Ali having a posh time in the main house, Gill, Jen and I in the very sweet annexe. A quick pop into the Cinema Bookshop outside, where I made the first purchases of the weekend, then lunch in Shepherds. Then book buying madly, including a good haul at the Sensible Bookshop which has a pound section downstairs. Gill went off to see her son’s choir and have a (n innocent) conjugal visit, Jen tried to steal a book from the Crime bookshop (of all places!), we had a lovely icecream each back at Shepherds (and released some books; Ali got a catch!) and Ali went a bit doolally in the Bookends that is still there (hooray!)

The Blue Boar for a lovely fish and chip (and lentil and cider) dinner, drinks on Jen thanks to a small bit of luck (don’t all write begging letters at once). I introduced Gill to the delights of Blue Sapphire Gin, and she reciprocated by trying her best to make peculiar faces at my camera. I caught her in the end though!

Jen and I were up early for a run in the countryside on Sunday morning; we managed to find the river and had a lovely time pounding along the paths and under a little tunnel. Lovely cooked breakfast and a bit of bird watching then off to more bookshops – lots of wandering in the Castle outside shelves, another go at Bookends and then we met Starry-Starry Jen (I still can’t work out how she can live so near and not actually burst her house with books!) and had a lovely time looking in various shops.

The Granary for lunch and a natter about how authors don’t look how you expect them (shallow? us?), *another* ice cream, then one last go at the Cinema Bookshop (where I made my last purchases – but good’uns!), said goodbye to Jen (the Welsh, we took our one back with us even though she also broke a till and knocked all the books in Bookends off the shelf, then again, Ali bought them all…), I stood on tiptoes in the car park to phone Matt and we set off.

A ridiculous game of iSpy on the motorway “car!” “motorway!” in which I did, indeed, nearly laugh myself sick, and all too soon we were home and, if unlucky enough to live with people, frantically smuggling huge bags of books up the stairs!

Photo of my haul here:

 
http://www.flickr.com/photos/9247360@N04/2504231585/

(this also takes you to my other Flickr pics of the weekend)

Only 30, one down on last time, but some crackers in there! I will post a list later. Please ignore the ones that aren’t strictly horizontal; they are the ones that were already on my TBR, looming behind this layer. Oh, and the ones on the right don’t count – they are for rings, rays and pressies!