He landed in Manchester at about 3:30 on Tuesday afternoon and then somewhat foolhardily hired a car and drove from Manchester to our place. I'm not sure I would want to navigate a car to an unfamiliar place after a long haul flight, but it all worked out well. He arrived at our place around half six, in time for dinner, wine and a good catch up.
I had taken Wednesday off so I could go out to play. So had Tabitha and Gareth. So after a pleasant stroll around the wetlands behind our house we bundled into our car and drove out to Bakewell through the Chatsworth Estate. It is true that this is not the most direct way, but it did take us through some pretty villages and beautiful countryside and, of course, past Chatsworth House.
Tabitha, Gareth and Cally came from Sheffield on the bus and joined us in Bakewell. I had been thinking that we could buy fish and chips and eat by the river, but Christian managed to bring some cold, showery weather with him so we abandoned that plan and went to one of the pubs for lunch. The Builder and I stopped going to The Peacock some years ago when the quality of the food went so far downhill that I had failed to eat my lunch the last time we had gone it. However, we noticed that there were new signs out the front and decided to give it a go. I think we may have to put it back onto our list of places to eat. The food was beautifully presented and was more than a little tasty. The beer and wine were palatable. Plus they were very welcoming to Cally.
The weather forecast had been for a showery afternoon. This probably wouldn't have stopped us going for a wander around the town, but there was a bus for Chesterfield due pretty much at that moment. Tabitha, Gareth and Cally hopped aboard and trundled off to our place. The Builder, Christian and I might still have had a bit of a potter but the shower that accompanied the bus was quite heavy. So we hopped in the car and headed back to our place, where there was more beer and more wine and much merriment. Then Taffa, Gaz and Cally hopped on yet another bus and headed home. Christian, The Builder and I went to The Nettle, where Christian had the obligatory burger and chips. And then we went home and fell into our respective beds.
It was a very early start this morning. Christian wanted to leave for Newcastle, where he has gone to a conference, at 5:30. You can't let someone head to Newcastle at that time in the morning without first feeding them coffee and a bacon roll! Fortunately, I had acquired some rolls from a bakery in Bakewell and we usually have bacon in the freezer. His departure was enlivened by his (and The Builder's) complete inability to find the switch for his hire car's headlights. And you absolutely can't drive to Newcastle at that time in the morning in October without your headlights on. Eventually (more by good luck, I think, than good management) he did find the switch - and off he went. A flying visit!
Simon's coming next week. I really must clean, tidy, dust and polish the house!!
|Christian at The Nettle. Click on him to reach the photo album|