Mini Break After Easter

After a fantastic Easter Sunday with the family in Cambridge, we kept driving north for a week away. Despite my vow to never again take elderly dog on holiday, the kennels were all full and so she travelled in a well-prepared boot and all our luggage was on the back seat. Husband had booked an Airbnb, so I told Mum we were off to the Lake District and I would see her in a week.

The roads were empty, so even with a few stops for elderly dog, we arrived at the cottage early evening. Beautiful scenery. No lakes though, so I messaged Mum to say we were in the Peak District.

Our cottage is the middle one behind me. This is my tired face. I need a holiday.

The cottage was lovely, plonked right in the middle of a field with lambs skipping around. There was an enclosed back yard, so even if elderly dog had been at all interested in them, she wouldn’t have been able to reach the lambs. However, the lambs were interested in us—or to be precise, the car. They kept licking the wheels. Husband worried they might nibble something important. I told him lambs don’t have teeth. (This may not be factually correct, but it stopped him worrying.)

Lambs attempting to eat tyres.

On the first day we wandered into town. There were some nice shops selling posh food products. Lots of cheese and wine from Wensleydale. I messaged Mum and told her that actually, we are in the Yorkshire Dales. The nearest town is called Hawes. Husband told me you’d need to be careful not to name your house: The Hawes House, and I nearly fell off the pavement laughing. (This shows the sort of conversations we have when our children aren’t around to correct us.)

The first café we saw advertised bacon butties, so we had a cup of tea and a sandwich. I think it’s a biker café, as everyone else looked slightly like Hagrid, wore leathers and carried a helmet. I’m sure we blended right in though. Very nice bacon butties, so I think we’ll go there every morning.

I attempted a short stroll with the dog. She’s unkeen on hills, so had that ‘tolerant look’ when we set off. Lots of lambs skipped away, but their mothers did not. One mother in particular was very angry that we were in her field, and she walked deliberately towards us, her head lowered. She then stood facing us, and stamped on the ground. I don’t speak ‘sheep’ but the message was very clear. Not sure that elderly dog would fare very well in a stand-off with angry ewe, so we went back to the cottage. Dog returned to her bed with an ‘I told you so’ look. I told Husband he would have to come instead.

We went for a lovely walk across the fields. Husband wore wellies because it might be wet—he walks quite slowly in wellies. I wore walking boots, because they’re comfy for long walks. I walk very fast in my walking boots. You can guess how that turned out. Husband has a clever ordinance survey app on his phone, so he could give precise directions as we walked. I mostly ignored him and followed the footpath signs. This is how our household works. But the walk was lovely, with lambs everywhere and stone walls with little stiles and far-reaching views over the… lakes… peaks… dales.

Hope you have something lovely today too. Don’t forget where you are…
Thanks for reading. Take care.
Love, Anne x

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Crazy gang of lambs! Touch to watch the video.

Millthorpe is not The Peak District (though it tries).

Family Holiday 2021 continued.

We packed up the house in the Lake District and left. Everyone felt slightly dirty due to water shortage/lack of showering ability. Our next holiday home was in the Peak District, and we hoped they had more water. The drive was busy, as Saturdays in July are full of people leaving and arriving on holiday, but we didn’t meet any major hold-ups. Our journey took us through the outskirts of Sheffield, and we began to wonder how near the city our Airbnb would be. The details had described it as being in the grounds of Carpenter House, in an area of beautiful countryside, but we were beginning to worry.

At the last minute, the roads turned away from the city, we drove through a few fields, and arrived at the little hamlet of Millthorpe. It was not exactly the Peak District, but was far enough from the city to not feel crowded. There were several fields of horses, and lots of the houses had stables attached—clearly an area for the horsey people of Sheffield to live.

Went for a walk across the fields. More horses. I am very comfortable with all cows and sheep; horses make me nervous but we weren’t eaten or stampeded. Walked to the local Royal Oak for dinner. The pub was ancient, with low beams and a huge fireplace. The menu was limited unless you are a cheese-lover (everything had cheese, and fried cheeses made a very nice, if rather unhealthy, starter).

Sunday 25th July

The family voted to go paddle-boarding. They discovered you could hire boards and wet suits at Tittesworth Reservoir (with a name like that, I really hope they did a Google search for ‘paddle boarding’ and not something else!)

The drive took us through the Peak District, which is beautiful and very near to Millthorpe. The weather was less sunny than last week, but still warm. We arrived at the car park, and saw several families hiring wet suits, squeezing into the little changing cubicles, struggling to carry the unwieldy boards. I decided that paddle boarding was not something I wanted to do (I felt that complete lack of co-ordination, no ability to balance and not being a good swimmer would make it less fun). Went for a walk with Bea while the others pootled about on the water for an hour.

Paddle Boarding

Everyone seemed to have fun, and we discussed it (at length) in the pub afterwards. I had real trouble remembering that the term is ‘paddle-boarding’ and not ‘water-boarding’ so I kept asking them about their experience of torture.

Monday 26th July

We went for a walk to Lud’s Church. This is a cavern, tucked into the Peak District, and makes for a pretty walk. There are many stories and legends swirling around the cavern, and Emm assured me it was the spookiest place in the world.

We walked along a pretty footpath through the woods, the sun was shining, birds singing, ferns carpeted the floor. Hard to see why it was spooky. We arrived at the cavern, and the temperature dropped as we walked between the giant-sided rocks, taking care not to slip on the moss. It was easier to understand (slightly) why someone might think the cavern was haunted. It then transpired that he had visited at dusk, on Halloween, when all the trees were bare and everywhere was gloomy and cold—that would definitely be spooky.

Lud’s Church

We left the cavern and walked up to the Roaches, which are big rocks protruding from the hills. Great views of the valley.

The Roaches

Tuesday 27th July

Walked up Mam Tor, near Castleton. This is about as high as my knees can manage, but actually was very easy as there are paths all the way and no scary precipice to make me dizzy. It was a long walk, and I was pleased to reach the top. Asked Husband to take photo for blog. Family photo-bombed. I informed them the photo was for a blog, and I would  use it whatever they looked like. Posed for another photo. No better. Decided to use it anyway.

Unhelpful Family

In the afternoon, we visited Chatsworth House. But that will have to wait for another blog.

Thanks for reading. Take care.
Love, Anne x

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