United Kingdom

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8 travelers at this place

  • Day13

    D13 Scotland to England

    July 17, 2019 in the United Kingdom ⋅ ☁️ 17 °C

    Today we knew was going to be a hard one because:
    A) We were leaving Scotland- which meant saying goodbye to loved ones.
    B) Driving 220ish miles (354km) while trying to stop and admire many the beautiful view.

    For the last two mornings, my Auntie Bella and have so kindly laid out brekkie for us and today was no exception! With our bags packed and our bellies full, many hugs were given and compulsory photos were taken. We are so thankful for Bella and Billy- we will miss the late night chats with copious cups of tea...

    We had a great morning as I introduced Ant to a couple more relatives of mine, who took us out for brunch. Apparently Scottish cafes don’t cut the mustard, so to really impress a guest, brunch is to be consumed in a glass house near a castle. Go figure.
    I think I may have sent the poor waiter into a head spin when I asked about non-dairy milk options....I clearly need to learn my target audience better. To add insult to injury, the coconut/soy/monkey beard milk he was using wasn’t frothing for my cappuccino so I said I was happy to slum it flat white style. Breakfast was beautiful- pancakes, salmon and eggs and the largest vat of porridge you’ve ever seen. Thank you again Aunt Moira and Uncle George- you spoiled us rotten.

    On our way down the coast we stopped off at Dumfries House and Gardens in Cumnock, which was just amazing. We were pressed for time for the agreement was to see as much as possible of the garden in as little time as possible. Yeah right- over an hour later we reluctantly ran back to the car totally blown away by what we’d seen. I’m not a huge fan of gardens as I wouldn’t know where to start, but Ant is totally in his happy place. And in saying that- if I come across a veggie garden, which I did, I can also lose track of time. 10/10.

    From the moment we left Prestwick, the heavens had opened and it was either lightly raining or right pissing it down. That, with wanting to reach our destination by dinner time, made the journey a bit more challenging. We reached the Lake District after 5pm and had fun zooming down the tiny roads at 100km/hr (sorry Mums!)! It was such a vast expanse of mountainous highs and lows- it was probably a good thing we couldn’t pull over for photos every 5 minutes! Ambleside was our only pit stop and was so cute -very busy- but was full of character and we’d definitely go back as there looked like plenty of walks nearby.

    Once we reached our accomodation in Manchester, we spent the night relaxing and catching up with old, and new, friends. Can’t ask for a better way to finish a day!
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  • Day12

    It's nice to be here, given there

    October 16, 2012 in the United Kingdom ⋅ ⛅ 41 °F

    We were off to the usual late start, not due to planning but due to misdirection. The instructions I received for Budget said the car rental was in Terminal 1. Kim and I looked all over Terminal 1 and found nothing. Finally, Kim asked the man at "Disabled Services" (seemed logical), if he could tell us where the care hire was. Well, about three weeks ago (which is after I made the reservation) they moved the car rentals off site to the Car Hire Village. We needed to take a bus. So, we waited for the bus and then took a long bus ride to the Village. As we walked in the door, I heard Anhgus' voice. She and Kim chatted while I got the car. With keys in hand, we loaded up, aimed north and hit the motorway. We had very little trouble finding the Lake District.

    It was a joy to see Barbara and Nick again. They oriented us to the cottage, as we got caught up on things. After chatting for a bit, we set out for a walk to the next village over for lunch. We walked along a small river, transporting the fallen leaves of autumn trees. We wandered through some meadows for grazing, being sure to close the gates behind us. There are so many black sheep here. Now I know where they all go! Being called a black sheep here probably means that you're just like everyone else.

    We enjoyed an extended lunch at Chester's, by the water, then retraced our steps to Elterwater, where we will be staying for a few days. Anhgus and Kim immediately took a nap, and Barbara didn't surrender to the sandman until a bit later. I stayed up with Nick and did some reading, until it was time to eat again. We walked a hundred paces to the pub and devoured a chicken and leek pie. When we returned to the cottage, we ate a mountain of cake, literally. Barbara had a cake made with seven hikers on the summit. Unfortunately, Jim and Matt couldn't make it, but we ate enough for them too.

    Big cheers to us! Five years ago today we made the summit of Kilimanjaro together. We all agreed that we were happy to have done it...once!
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  • Day13

    Amblin' to Ambleside

    October 17, 2012 in the United Kingdom ⋅ ⛅ 50 °F

    Kim, Nick, and I opted out of the 10 mile run in the rain this morning. Instead, I slept in and got going slowly. We made it out of the house around 11:00 for a walk to Ambleside. The Lake District is carved with hiking trails throughout the area. You cross through a number of gates, as a great deal of the countryside is used for sheep grazing. The sheep don't seem to mind people traipsing across their territory, although the farmers can shoot your dog if they go after the sheep. Otherwise, you are welcome to transverse others' property all you wish.

    Several species of trees are turning here, so the colors are vibrant against the green meadows. It did rain off and on, but nothing that the raincoat and quick-drying pants couldn't handle. The weather hung clouds and mist over the peaks of the fells (mountains) seen from the trail. Barbara gave me a little schooling on proper terms this morning at breakfast. Besides fells, I learned that beck is a stream and force is a waterfall. And I thought we were all speaking English! We had several moments lost in translation that we laughed about. I watched Barbara try to explain where we were, and Kim couldn't quite get it. So Barbara, ever so patient, spelled Rydal, which she received with an "Ohhh!" (insert inflection of finally understanding). Nick is terribly gracious, as well. He and I had walked over a bridge, where Anhgus, Kim, and Barbara stopped to enjoy the river running below. I heard Nick ask me if I had played the pool stick game. I asked for clarification, and he repeated the pool stick game. "No, but I've played billiards." Now, he could have easily laughed at my misunderstanding, but he kindly correct my hearing and said, "Poo stick game, like Winnie the Poo."

    "Ohhh!" (insert inflection of finally understanding).

    We arrived at Ambleside around 2 and enjoyed a lunch of soup and sandwiches. We wandered about the town a bit before hitting the trail home. Nick devised a combination of footpaths to avoid returning the same way that we came. We walked along Rydal Lake and hiked along a hill looking down on a much larger body of water. One of the things I adore about this region is the abundance of water. It seems like everywhere you walk there is a small creek, beck, river or lake. You are never far out of earshot of trickling water. Of course, the result is an endless hue of green in every direction.

    Tired, we arrived back at the cottage around 6pm. We cleaned up and headed to the local pub for dinner. The Britannia Inn is about 500 years old but has been a pub for just 200. I went for the traditional bangers and mash, since I hadn't had it yet. It was a delicious Cumberland sausage with potatoes mashed with sweet red onion and a lovely brown onion gravy. Delicious!

    Lest I forget for those who don't know...The Poo stick game requires each player to find a small stick. Once everyone is properly armed with their own Poo stick, they line up on the side of the bridge from whence the water flows. On the count of three, the sticks are simultaneously dropped in the river, and the players run to the other side of the bridge to see which stick floats past the predetermined finish line first. Quite a lot of fun for grown adults.
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  • Day14

    A day in the Lakes

    October 18, 2012 in the United Kingdom ⋅ ⛅ 48 °F

    We spent the day in Windermere and Grasmere today. Poor Nick had planned an 8 mile hike for us, which was then reduced to a portion of the trail, which was further shortened to a few walks around the towns. We got up way too late for a long hike, and Kim was not feeling well enough for a prolonged walk, due to her gastronomical issues.

    Grasmere is a nice little village that held great inspiration for William Wordsworth. We visited his gravesite at the parish church, as well as the cottage in which he lived. As we took in the views, it was clear to me that anyone could be a great poet with this much material. The area is flush with vegetation, and I'm sure the wildlife was abundant in his time. The lake reflects the fall colors today, and the water is probably still just as clear as it was back then.
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