Our Cotswold town appears to be falling to bits, and just before Christmas! It’s almost as bad as when the Chinese takeaway shut down for six weeks back in February. It all started about a month ago when the town sign—a lovely oval, hand-painted affair detailing scenes from the town—disappeared from its perch on the edge of the market square. Weeks ago we were assured by the town artist that it was just away for repairs, but it has yet to materialize again. Then, a week ago the bells stopped ringing. I’d go as far as to say the church bells are the most distinguishing feature of the town. They ring all throughout the day and night, marking the hour and sometimes the quarter hour too. Every new resident has a story of how it took them some time to get used to sleeping through the night with the bells banging on, but it invariably ends with a profession of fondness for said bells. Tuesday night the bells starting clanging like they would for a wedding or christening, and I thought we were back in business. But they stopped after an hour or so and haven’t been heard from again, so the mystery of the bells continues. Tonite we go for Christmas drinks at Glebe House. It’s right next to the vicarage so I expect the vicar will be there. He has some explaining to do.