I have never owned an Aga, but I have had a Rayburn surgically removed. It was on the Island of Arran many years ago. I was living in an old house for the winter months. There was not much by way of heat in the place, save for the Rayburn in the kitchen. I spent as much time as I could with my bottom resting on the towel rail. When it came time to leave, I had become one with that Rayburn, heat source to heat source. There is a line across my anatomy which even yet is more susceptible to cold than its surrounding flesh.
That wasn’t the first Rayburn to which I had become attached. There was one in the kitchen of my Aunt’s house. Often, we’d travel up the old A9 to spend Christmas and New Year at my Aunt’s. It was dark when we’d arrive in time for a late dinner. The holiday rituals began with a slow-cooked pork and prune casserole, and included a Boxing Day leftover turkey curry. Throughout the season, the big Le Creuset was washed, but never put away.
The Rayburn lived in an old fireplace where a much larger range had once been. There was room beside it in the alcove for a stool by day and the dogs’ bed by night. The collies and my Grandfather had precedence, but possession was nine-tenths of the law. After winter walks along the beach – good having been done to us – we’d form a line, being slowly shunted along the towel rail. My Aunt would say that she could not make tea with us all standing in front of the Rayburn. There are times when logic is over-rated.
No, I have never owned an Aga or a Rayburn, but I pick up pieces of Le Creuset when there is a good sale: just in case I ever do.