We joined the National Trust yesterday. How grown-up does that make me feel?! I'd like to say that I did this as a purely unselfish act in a desire to support the conservation of Britain's heritage, but really I just became aware that we were going to be spending many weekends trying to entertain The Boy's seemingly insatiable appetite for new sights during 2008, and I wanted to save a bit of brass and claim back some of the cost via Gift Aid. Plus, y'know, how could I resist a free picnic rug? :-)
So, we went to Beningbrough Hall yesterday, which was all very nice, and we had great fun playing with the interactive exhibits in their portrait gallery, and spending almost £15 in the café on a couple of bowls of damn fine soup, drinks and a pack of crisps.
I do love the opportunities for people-watching at such venues. NT properties seem to attract a certain breed of middle Englander, as exemplified by this brief overheard conversation between two well-spoken girls in their early twenties:
Girl A: "So, was your boyfriend a member of the National Trust before you got together, or was that your doing?"
Girl B: "He was a member before I met him!"
Girl A: "*squeal* Ahh, that's so lovely that you actually met a guy who was into the NT!"