dirty weekend away…!

That’s dirty in the literal sense of the word…. 😉

Our weekend actually started on Thursday night which was rather wonderful.  On Friday morning we went to see Josh in his class assembly where the Year 3 Class at Thingwall Primary School told us about their penpals in the Isle of Man.  It’s great to see Josh smiling and full of confidence and I especially liked his crab walk!  After the assembly, we headed over to the Peak District for Paul’s birthday weekend at the Old Vicarage Barn in Youlgreave, Derbyshire (www.oldvicaragebarn.co.uk).

We stopped at Bakewell on the way and picked up some provisions – including a Bakewell Tart of course!  When we arrived at the barn, we found it was a lovely place and so beautifully done inside.  It was open plan concept and was more like a loft conversion than a cottage with a mezzanine floor for the bedroom.  The housecoats with the barn’s name embroidered on them were a nice touch as was the Victoria sponge that was waiting for us when we arrived.

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At various points over the weekend, we were covered in mud from head to foot and poor little Stella looked brown rather than black and white!  The country has had so much rain, I guess the conditions were not surprising.  A couple of the footpaths were flooded as well so that took some careful navigating and foot placing.

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On Saturday, we walked in Lathkill Dale and after getting back to the barn and getting clean and dry (this took a while!) we went for a celebratory birthday drink in the George Hotel and then had some birthday cake, of course.

On Sunday we walked again from the door of the cottage across lots more muddy fields and paths.  The highlight of Sunday for me was Stanton Moor with the 9 Ladies Stone Circle, Tower and Cork Stone and most importantly some nice dry paths.  We went to the Farmyard Inn in the village for our dinner where we were all made to feel really welcome and I enjoyed my Homity Pie very much.  A Homity Pie, as I learned, is a traditional British vegetarian open pie and I think I might have to try making one of those – it was yummy!

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On our way home on Monday we stopped near Congleton and walked up the Cloud and along the canal.  The Cloud had great views of Cheshire but it was a bit misty in the distance – we could still make out Jodrell Bank though.  While we were walking along the canal two other dogs joined us and decided they wanted to be part of our pack…. They followed us for a while but after a phone call and a bit of a wait, they were reunited with their owner.  We felt like we’d done our good deed for the day.

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I enjoyed our time together this weekend, the walking and the relaxing and the opportunity to take lots of pictures too.  We both agreed we could have easily managed a week at the Old Vicarage Barn but it wasn’t to be – back to work today.

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