Take one farmer's wife, five retired schoolteachers, one recently retired high-flying businesswoman, and me and what do you get? An afternoon of fun and laughter, lively conversations and a plan to meet again next week, same time, same place.
Our ages ranged from mid fifties to early nineties and we all live either in Little Bunting, or Dovecote Dell which is just a couple of fields away, longer by road.
Our hands were kept fully occupied as one village elder attempted to teach us how to make sugar paste flowers and leaves.
I have never enjoyed the company of so many women. for so long, before. They were all delightful, no one was trying to score points, everyone chipped in to keep the laughter flowing, encouraging comments and a helping hand as needed.
Throughout my sixty-odd years I have made many friends but have rarely kept them for long, not because we fall out but because we have moved so frequently and promises of letters and telephone calls eventually fizzle and fade.
I've never really understood this need that so many people have, to be enfolded and supported by a gaggle of friends. Today I think I got a little glimpse of what that kind of friendship must be like. It was nice.
Old habits die hard though.