Sunday, September 21, 2014


Some little while ago I had an email from Crosscountry, one of the main British train operators. It included a discount travel voucher, to be used on their routes and by, I think, the end of October.

Pity, thought I.  I don't really need to go to Edinburgh between now and the end of October. Where else do they go?  A stupid question, really.  I know perfectly well that they go to Newcastle, to Plymouth, to various points in between.  And to York.

We are both very fond of York. And I knew that the Food and Wine festival was coming up. So I checked the dates and bought tickets for the first Saturday of the festival.  I was particularly delighted to find that not only did i have a discount voucher but they were also offering discounted tickets on selected trains.  A tad over £40 for us both to travel to York and back - in First Class seats!

So off we went, yesterday morning, through a gloomy, misty day, in our very comfortable seats to York. The train was oddly busy - I hadn't expected quite so many people to be travelling on a Saturday morning in September. But it appear that there were various football matches going on, plus, of course, the Food and Wine Festival in York, plus various festivals and other events in other towns and cities.

Lunch first, in the Olde Starre Inn, where we frequently do eat when in York.  It does nice, sturdy pub food, but we really ought to branch out and try other places.  There is a multiplicity of pubs and a wealth of other eating places that we never try!

Pondering what to have for lunch
I shall have a pie
Well - it was a *wine* festival as well as a food festival!
If we had just gone to York for a day trip, I think we would have been very pleased with our day.  But we had gone specifically for the food festival and when we have gone in the past we have regretted not taking more money with us, or more bags to the festival market and we have come home with lots of really interesting purchases. But this year, the Market Square was closed for refurbishment, so the general market has moved to Parliament Street until the Market Square is available again.  This meant that the festival market, which usually occupies that space, had moved to a much smaller space and had far fewer stalls.  It was also extremely crowded. It was a bit disappointing because there wasn't really anything particularly interesting to buy or taste. Of course the festival is about much more than just the festival market but we hadn't planned to go to any of the events, so hadn't bought tickets.  Fortunately, the general market is a very good one, and we bought meat and fish and various things from there. So it wasn't a disappointing day as such, just a disappointing food festival!

When Matt, Belinda, Sage and William were here we bought tickets for everyone to go to Jorvik. Because I gift aided them it meant that we have unlimited access to Jorvik for 12 months. Fortunately, we do not need to have exactly the same number of adults, seniors, children and infants each time we want to go.  We can't have any more, but we can have less.  So The Builder and I took advantage of the access to get out of the rain and have a nice little sit down on one of the Jorvik time capsules. I don't suppose either of us really *needs* to go to Jorvik. We've both been several times. But I rather like it and each time I go I see something I haven't noticed before, or remembered.  And if we don't have to pay to go in, we might just as well. Fortunately, I had remembered to take the ticket with us!!

We had a nice potter about the city centre streets, then made our way back to the station.  A glass of wine to fill in the time until our train was due, and then back home, where I made fish and chips with some sea bass fillets I had bought in the market.  I have a nice piece of beef for today's lunch.

And today - the sun has come out and the sky is blue and the fog which has been hanging around for several days has finally blown away!

Oh - and I finally managed to buy my monthly train pass. Yesterday, while we were waiting for our train to York in the morning.  The system refused to sell it to me on Friday morning. But I was in no hurry yesterday morning (although I think the people behind me in the queue might have been :-D) and could be patient and wait for the system to get over its sulkiness!!

We met lots of lovely, well-behaved, friendly dogs in York.  This one was being rather naughty :-D

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