13 April 2008

Hills and scones - what more could you want?

We went on a spectacular journey to Cragside today (made slightly nerve-wracking by the Triumph Dolomite SE deciding that it wasn't going to play nice, and losing power whilst making worryingly loud noises).

There's something about seeing hills that makes my heart leap - and today the view across the tops to the Cheviot, all covered with snow in the sunshine was just bliss. There was moorland for miles around, with the odd pheasant wandering about (some still slightly squashed by the roadside), and hundreds of sheep and lambs pottering about in their fields.

Of course, being an urban girl at heart, I sped past in the car straight to the National Trust property with tearooms, rather than going for an actual walk.

Said property, Cragside, was spectacular as always. It really is a beautiful house, but, sadly, with not a huge amount to amuse a two-year-old raring to climb up and down boulders outside. The sauna/plunge bath was fun, as was the kitchen complete with mouse and mousetrap on the floor, but it was always just a bit too crowded. Rather more fun was had outside, spotting the tallest Douglas fir in Europe, clambering about in the rock garden, and eating fantastic scones in the courtyard tea room in the sunshine.

We also had one of the chilliest picnics in living memory, and have decided that the summer starts here. From now on, we shall have a picnic or barbeque every weekend until the autumn.

Right, that's doomed the summer to rain, hail and sleet. Anything else I can jinx?

1 comment:

Barrenblog said...

One of my best-ever days was spent at Cragside. It was a school history trip, weirdly, at the age of about 16. It was May and perfectly sunny, and in addition to "the history bit" in the house, we ate packed lunches outside and poked around the gardens for hours. It was one of those days where a whole raft of "really funny at the time" things happened which kept us talking for years. I have a framed photo of us all - girls with whom I've largely lost touch - standing giggling in the sunshine, with the pink and grey turrets of the house peeking up behind us. Whenever I hear the "don't you need days like these?" line in Ocean Colour Scene's 'The Day We Caught The Train", I think of that day. It's a magical place.