Yesterday in the cafe... after I handed my notice in (which went really well actually... except that I think I gave her the impression that I would still be around should she need occasional help... I'll work on that!) we had a visit from some new people to the village. They have just moved from London, husband, wife and small baby. I think they were finding the village a little quiet for them. The husband asked if it was ok for him to do some work in the cafe (as we have free wi fi) until his own internet access was sorted out. Of course it was ok, the cafe was half empty anyway. But it got me thinking about when I first came to the village. Its a very typical English village... not a twee chocolate box village, but still very 'village-ey' if you know what I mean... and if you dont I'll give you an example or two.
A friend of mine who lives 5 miles away in Witney called a builder in Eynsham and asked if he could come out to fix a leaky roof. The builder enquired where she lived and when he heard it was Witney he said 'oh no, I dont go that far, I only do in the village.'
My first time at the bus stop in the village I was obviously spotted as a newcomer and an elderly gentleman enquired if I was new and where did I live. I told him and he nodded and asked if I liked the village. I said I did and asked him how long he had lived here... he replied that he was born here and that his family were mentioned in the Doomsday book (as is Eynsham). It was obvious at that point that I had a long way to go before I would be considered a 'villager' if I ever would!
These are all the variations of spelling of Eynsham since it first appeared in history in the 10th century.
The village was, at one point, quite important as we had an abbey. Alas the abbey is no more as it fell victim to Henry VIII and his reformations of the church... the ruined abbey gradually disappeared over the following centuries as everyone in the village who needed to do repairs to their house or build a new extension simply robbed the stones. There are some rather curiously shaped (gothic arches etc) bits to several of the older houses in the village.