Thursday, 20 July 2017

Tour d'Avebury

What with all this time on the south coast away from Erin Mae, we were due a day out. We drove to Avebury in Wiltshire, a small village sitting within a stone circle.

The National Trust cares for the site and owns the manor house.

They have done a superb job of creating a visitor centre, making good use of some of the old barns.

The stone circle itself is far larger than Stonehenge,

and some of the stones have fascinating shapes.

There's an avenue between the main circle and an associated site, which we explored on our bikes.

Up hill and down dale – inspired by the TdF, my best beloved was daunted by nothing,

though she did need a bit of a rest at the end!

We picked the best day of the week for our visit. For anyone on the Kennet and Avon, it's perhaps within hiking rather than strolling distance, and thoroughly worth the effort.

Wednesday, 12 July 2017

Celebrations continue!

Since coming home from our European cruise we've spent only a few days on Erin Mae, what with one thing and another. Appointments and decorating, for a start, and now the second major part of our birthday celebrations – the family all gathering for the inside of a week at an AirBNB on the edge of Exmoor. I'd planned my birthday gliding "experience" for the Sunday before we were all due to meet up, but the airfield cancelled it the day before, on the grounds of the towing aircraft having a fault (very encouraging!). Still, we came down and stayed overnight in the guesthouse we'd booked and on Monday morning found ourselves strolling along the towpath of the Great Western Canal at Tiverton.

It's a nice enough walk, and there were different kinds of floating craft to catch the eye.

Then it was time to meet up and settle in at Haddon End – an absolutely brilliant place for an event like this. There are eleven of us – my best beloved and myself, three sons, two daughters-in-law and four grandchildren, some over especially from Norway.

The view from the front of the house, and therefore from most of the bedrooms, is stunning.

Yesterday it rained copiously, so we all went off to the 10-pin bowling alley in Taunton. Today it was dry and sunny, so we drove over to Simonsbath and went on a walk to Cow Castle.

An ideal spot for lunch and swimming!

It was a good, deep pool and we all got wet, in spite of the hypothermic shock provided by the river. Then it was home for a barbecue on the front terrace.

Some cooked.

And some enjoyed being played with.

It's been a brilliant day, and a fabulous family holiday so far. It's going to end too soon. I'm afraid Erin Mae is feeling rather left out.