Saturday, December 21, 2013

Our last day of the break

Thursday morning was unusually bright, and the sun shone clear through a chilly sky, so we set out across the plains to Salisbury, planning to visit the cathedral and do some Christmas shopping. The cathedral, at least, was no disappointment.

Shopping, however, was a vain task, and we gave up as the weather started to deteriorate. Salisbury's a lovely city, though.

Friday morning, we were out of the house and ready to leave just after 10:00. We went back to "The Emporium", a favourite shop of ours just a couple of minutes' walk from the house, and bought some Christmas gifts. The journey home was good, in pleasant weather. We'd had a good week. Saturday was brilliant, Sue and Richard were very friendly and helpful, and we got a good look around the area. Now back to Christmas preparations!

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Poor weather, but good days out

We've had several winter breaks over the past few years, and this one is giving us the worst weather of all. Largely windy, cold and raining, it's stopped us doing much of the sightseeing and walking which we normally do, but we're having a good time, nonetheless, simply being somewhere new.

Yesterday, we drove to Marlborough, a town which had been recommended to us. Frankly, we weren't that impressed, and we didn't spend more than a couple of hours browsing shops and sightseeing. We were surprised to see the local parish church of St Peter & St Paul, having been closed in 1974, now being run by a charitable trust as a very nice cafe, craft and gift shop, and a venue for various arts projects and events.

Driving on through Avebury, home of the famous stone circle around the village...

...we arrived at Lacock Abbey, a National Trust property in a tiny village of ancient buildings. Very quaint, very beautiful, and very full of tourists for the time of year. After lunch in their restaurant, we hurried to the Christmas Tree Exhibition in the cloisters, where lots of trees had been decorated by local schools, businesses, charities and other organisations.

The whole building and grounds look beautiful and very interesting, but most was closed to visitors for the winter. Parts of the abbey appeared as Hogwarts in the Harry Potter films. We'll have to return in the summer.

The village of Lacock, too, needs time and decent weather for proper exploration.

Back at the house at the end of a chilly day, we cosied up in front of another DVD film, "Stardust", which was easy-going and very enjoyable.