A big log fire and twenty candles in the lounge – what a wonderful scene. There was a but, though – we were in the middle of a power cut!

Luckily, this hadn’t put a dampener on our guests’ moods, who, despite having just met at Simply Healing, stayed sitting around the fire chatting like old friends. The Simply Healing team kept up the great British spirit and improvised with some delicious juices and warming broths. Hot water bottles wrapped up in fleecy blankets and tucked into the bottom left hand oven: voila – cosy beds for the night. Thank goodness for Mr Aga!

While candles in storm lanterns cast their soft light around the house, Kate and I improvised behind the scenes. Just good, old-fashioned conversation – getting to know each other and sharing life’s stories. What an interesting way to start a detox; and how understanding our guests were in appreciating all of our efforts.

We sent them off to bed with herbal teas with a little dash of cinnamon. No computers or internet, just quiet time.

The electricity returned eventually – thank goodness – but some of us still sat by the fire and enjoyed some magic moments together that recalled the days when storytelling was an art form. Lovely.