My Yorkshire break was wonderful. Relaxing, renewing and sadly, not long enough.
On the Friday, when I rushed from the train station to collect the kids, someone at school asked me where I’d been, they then mentioned that I must be excited to see the boys and asked if I’d missed them….humm….the honest truth is not really. I mean, of course I missed them in a way but it’s not like we were apart for long and I didn’t realise just how much I’d relish this time out, it’s been a long (9 years) time coming.
Every day started with breakfast in bed. Sadly, I woke at 6 am ish despite having no-one to wake me. The luxury of coffee and a dippy egg (I’m mostly not eating bread at the moment, but carbs were one of the holiday highlights), followed by a book read (Longbourn – thanks Fran, for the tip-off!) then a bit of walk planning was heavenly.
Most of my walks looked like this, at some point. Typical Yorkshire Dales view, old lanes, dry stone walls, lots and lots and LOTS of moss.
The weather was mixed. I packed badly, originally thinking it’d be sunny, then realising not so reverting back to wet weather, cold walking gear, only to find that although it rained a little on the first day it was quite glorious between showers and on Wednesday I felt ill-dressed for the hot, summer sunshine.
I walked 12 miles on day one, from Burnsall (where I stay) to Grassington (to see my Nana and usually my Aunts, who sadly weren’t around on this visit). From there I walked to Grass Woods, and what a beautiful little fairy wood it is! I’d forgotten just how nice. It was drizzling at this point but it made it all the more pretty, a kind of damp, green wonderland. It’s the last known natural habitat of the Lady’s Slipper Orchid here in the UK, we went to look at it once, with my Dad, having to be lead there by an arranged guide and step over trip wires that keep it guarded. I read it had a police guard last time it flowered and is appearing (in it’s cultivated form) at Chelsea Flower Show this year.
I walked back via Linton and Thorpe, I had hoped to take lots of nice photos, but I really struggle with using my phone verses my ‘proper’ camera, partly it’s just that I can’t see what I’m taking a photo of, due to the sun reflexion and also I have no idea what is being focused on so they tend to come out blurred.
This is ‘Manor House’ in Thorpe, it’s my new house crush and is where my Great Gran and her family lived. I felt like a bit of a stalker trying to photograph it discreetly and had to attempt to avoid the blue wheelie bin that’s just out of shot on the left, hence the not best angle, I thought it might be pushing it a bit far if I wheeled the bin out of the way for a better photo! Incidentally, if my Fairy Godmother is listening, I’d happily take the old family farmhouse at Beckermonds or better still, Gran’s house in Burnsall…any will do!
I mostly took photos of walls, moss and green things. I was wondering what makes walking here so different to my local area of Kent, apart from the vastness of the landscape and the feeling of history you get from the geological formations. I really do think moss plays a big part for me, it’s everywhere, especially in the woodland areas and it’s what makes the difference from walking in a bluebell wood here in Kent to one Up North. That and the quietness, most days I didn’t meet anyone, especially when out on moorland.
Day two I was meeting a family friend for lunch, so I walked afterwards, from the house I grew up in, where my brother now lives near Bolton Abbey (he brought me back and dropped me off after lunch…in fact he was my taxi service and dinner companion – along with my SIL – most evenings for which I own him a huge thanks!) back to Burnsall. It was hot and sunny and I was badly dressed in jeans, when I should have been in shorts. I took photos but they are not great, so I’ll spare you. A highlight was stuffing my face with a chocolate 99 from the ice cream van at Barden Tower bridge, for which my Bro had to lend me money in advance, after I realised I’d come out walking for a second day with no cash. I took a selfie but I just look hot and sweaty so you don’t need to see that.
On my last day I walked up onto Burnsall Moor via Thorpe, I had hoped to make it to Barden Upper Reservoir but I mostly got lost and wandered around knee deep in mud whilst trying not to step on all the slugs. It’s all peat and bog up there and I had visions of ‘Jamaica Inn’ style being sucked under, having recently read the book. It didn’t help that it was grey and a bit wet and I met no-one on my few hours walking. No drama going on in my brain then. Still, I gave up and walked back down to Burnsall, thinking all the time that the people who do the yearly fell race there are nutters as it’s quite easy to step badly on your ankle just having a potter, let alone a competitive run!
Clearly, I’m back now, and mildly depressed about it. I have a throat investigation this afternoon (due to years of acid reflux, I’ve been putting it off for 6 years, since I had the last one, as I know it’s horrid but I’ve agreed with the consultant that he’s going to give me ‘elephant’ doses of sedation this time). Poor C has to have two grown up fillings (don’t feed your kids dried fruit, or those sticky snacks made from fruit only, as they are evil for little teeth) and despite M having done a great job whilst I’ve been away, I feel overwhelmed by everyday life and the endless lists of jobs.
On a very positive note, I have both the above dresses on their way from the Love Ur Look pop-up shop in House of Fraser. I had ordered just the top one but having seen how quickly things are selling out, added the second. I’ll report back on fit and quality when they arrive but figured I’d best write about them whilst the shop is active, so you can go grab one, if you wish.
Right, off to have my last glass of water before I’m no longer allowed to eat or drink anything until after my procedure. What joy.