Arrived safely at The White Hart Innand enjoyed a tastyfestiveevening meal.After breakfast the following morning, we discovered that the snow was already in retreat from the High Street. However, the countryside view at the back of the Inn told a very different story.
The roads were mostly clear for the return journey home, unlike the day before.Then weencounteredseveral hazards- apart from snow on the roads, there were some abandoned vehicles and large fallen branches unable to take the weight of the snow.
I don't normally relishsnowy weather, but this wasexceptional for our area, andmuch enhanced bywonderful skies and brilliant sunshine. A pair of cosy boots, warm coat, scarves and gloves found us ready to enjoy a walk.
Back home the Christmas tree in the garden looked lovely. This was a tiny tree when purchased nearly 20 years ago.
The late afternoon sun created a wonderful finale to the day. It lit up the snow and ice covered branches which twinkled likethousands of fairylights.
The comments received on the previous post were very helpful - thank you.
Some thought that we might be putting ourselves in a dangerous situation or be compromised by what we might see, butfortunately that was neveran issue. It wastheethical situation only that gave us concerns. However, several blogger friends rightly pointed out that across the ages there are manycountries thathave a less than perfect record concerning their human rights. I only have toread the history of my own country to know that is correct. We will continue to mullover the situation until the New Year, and then we will make a decision.
Are our codes of conduct decided as we journey through life, or are they instilled in us from childhood?
We personally are currently facing an ethical dilemma!
There is a country that we have talked about visiting for years, and now an opportunity has arisen. However, since making up our minds to go, the current regime is treating a section of the population in a way that makes our blood run cold.
Do we go or stay away? Of course there are two sides to thiscoin as many other people in this country rely solely on visitors for their livelihoods - cooks, cleaners, farmers, shops, drivers, guides.
If you have beenfaced with similar challenges what decision did you make?
As a child, trips into town with my mother, usually ended with us visitingMonk's barrow to buy pyclets or crumpets for tea. Sometimesshe purchased their oatcakes too, which are large and flat like a pancake, thenheated for breakfastwith a topping of crispy bacon and an egg.
via Until she died in 1963,Emily Monk sold pyclets"every day bar high days and holidays". The baton was then passed to Rose (pictured) who continued the tradition until 1974. A
combination of the Oil Crisis and the growing rise of supermarkets
spelt a lack of interest from the younger members of the Monk family and
Derby Pyclets passed into history.
I was in our local Waitrose shop and to my delight discovered that pyclets (pikelets in the shop) have recently been resurrected.
Pyclets and crumpets are similar, both aremade on a gridle, but traditionally pyclets are made using buttermilk, theyare thinner, lighter and airy. Crumpets are much thicker, equally tasty and good, but normally made using sourdough. Pyclets
like crumpets are eaten toasted then topped simply with butter; they can also
have either a savoury or a sweet topping. A drizzle of honey, a spoonful of conserve, or even some lemon curd. A savoury topping could be marmite, stilton cheese with chopped walnuts or maybea slice of smoked salmon accompaniedby a spoonful of horseradish and dill cream. The connotations are endless, they are very versatile, but you canuse whatever happens to take your fancy.
Begun in 1724, the Kennet & Avon Canal is 87 miles long, and has a total of 105 locks. It incorporates some fineexamplesofearly engineeringskills. The Caen Hill, Wiltshire stretch of the canal,has the longest continuous flight of locks in England. It was begun in 1794 and took 16 years to complete.There are 29 locks built in three distinct groups which have a rise of 237 feet, andcovera 2 mile stretch of the canal. On the first section at the lower level there are 7 locks spread along the canal for ¾ of a mile - the next 16 locks painstakingly climb up Caen Hill in a gradual ladder until reaching the top. These16 locks arefollowed by the final 6 locks which then conveythe canal through the town of Devizes and beyond. For a canal boat to negotiate all of these locks it takes a minium of 5 - 6 hours.
Moored at the bottom of Caen Hill, and awaiting their accent are two canal boats, but it was late afternoon, the lock keepers gone home, so no more boating activity until morning.
The canals are a haven for waterfowl - a flock of Canada Geese along with a male and female Mallard
anda flight ofswans overhead
At the top of the hill
anddusk is rapidly approaching.
The swans fly off into the sunset,
and the boats that climbedCaen Hill during the day, moor up for the night, before proceeding on their journey.
Today two minutes silence are observed at 11am on the 11th day of the 11th month to remember when hostilities formally ended following more than four years of battle during World War 1 - poppies are worn as a symbol of respect. In Cheltenham Spa Town Hall 9,000 individually handmade poppies - some knitted, others made from fabric - have been draped to form a waterfall in one of the buildings smaller entrance halls.
Spa Well situated in this small hallway features an octagonal counter
complete with Doulton Ware inserts and urns. This originally dispensed Spa Water transported from the splendid Regency Pittville Pump Rooms in Cheltenham.
Unfortunately, these health giving waters, which were so sought after by wealthy Regency visitors, are now only available to sample at Pittville. Health waters, which once tasted, will almost certainly ensure that you will not return for more!!!
Unlike most town halls, this building is a public venue and not the seat of the borough council, which is housed in the nearby municipal offices.
The hall was built at the turn of the c20th to accommodate the many balls and concerts which featured in the town's extensive social calender. Cheltenham Town Hall was quite literally built for celebrations.
Today the Town Hall is used for concerts, banquets, meetings, dances,
balls, exhibitions, conferences and is one of the major venues for the many Cheltenham festivals held throughout the year.
In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row,
That mark our place; and in the sky
The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.
We are the Dead. Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
Loved and were loved, and now we lie
In Flanders fields.
Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
The torch; be yours to hold it high.
If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
In Flanders fields. by Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae Composed at the battlefront on May 3, 1915
during the second battle of Ypres, Belgium