Monday, 5 July 2010

Monday July 5th 2010 - Now you get the lot!!

Yes Peeps, here we are.  a run-down on my hols.  By the way, that's water in that glass.

As my friend, Joan, rightly commented we were indeed near Winchester, England.  We hired a cottage for a week at the little village of West Meon in Hampshire which, for the uninitiated, is in the south of England.  Now we have only rarely visited the south - northerners don't, you know.  They're not like us down there (tee hee - that'll get 'em at it!).  They think we're all flat caps and whippets.  We think they're unfriendly to a man and earn wads of cash.  Maybe that evens up the score a bit - we were all wrong!

We could hardly believe our luck when the sun came out.  And when we had to get the sunglasses out and switch on the car's aircon we knew the rumours must be true.  We were in for some decent weather.  Mentally I was totting up how many more t-shirts I could have packed if I had left out the woolies.

When we eventually found it, the place we stayed at was a beautiful converted stables, all open-plan inside, with plenty of space for me and my turbo wheels, a kind of 'wrap-around stone patio and as much as we liked of a HUGE lawned garden
.It was an idyllic place, miles from anywhere - almost - and on the edge of the beautiful rolling Hampshire countryside of the South Downs.  Just what English people abroad come to remember when they think of England, and what other countries are taught IS England. A 'green and pleasant land'.  I wonder what they think when they see the completely different but equally beautiful scenery of Yorkshire?

On the following day we found that in the nearby village of Bramdean a village fete was being held.  Well we had to go to that didn't we?  Can't get much more English than the village fete.
On Sunday we decided to have lunch at a local pub that we had heard great things of - and we were not disappointed.  We had a superb meal in the sunny back garden.  Mein host(ess) pulled a table into the shade for us and we enjoyed a wonderful meal cooked by a chef who really knew his way around!  It was quite expensive but it was worth it..

The Thomas Lord (that was the name of the pub) was named after the founder of Lord's cricket ground in London and I must say I thought he must be a son on West Meon.  Not so:  he was a Yorkshireman - a northerner - from Thirsk.  But he spent the last few years of his life at West  Meon and is buried in their churchyard so we'll let them have that one!
 On Monday we thought a little train trip on the Watercress Line which runs from nearby New Alresford would be nice.  Shame it doesn't run on Mondays!  Heh heh, now you  above isn't my own photo don't you!  It is the real train though

Well we thought that was as far as that expedition would go but we did stay longer in Alresford than we first thought.  It was a lovely little town - well a middle-sized one maybe.  Apparently there used to be some controversy as to the correct spelling and pronunciation of the name.  It was alleged to be a spelling mistake by the compilers of the Doomsday Book (see?  they did typos then too!) and was properly spelled "Arlesford" and pronounced 'Ahlsford".  Now if anyone who happens to know the place is having a good old "she's been had" chortle at this, apply to me for a punch on the nose!

 Now this, Monkey World, is a place I have long wanted to visit, ever since there was a TV documentary series about it and on Wednesday off we went.  I know they are trying to do their bit towards protecting endangered primates and providing safe havens for abused apes and monkeys, but as a tourist venue I was not altogether impressed.   There were plenty of excellent animal enclosures but not much in the way of monkeys to be seen.  Me being seated didn't help of course but neither did the steepness and awkwardness of some of the slopes that had to be navigated to get near where you could view.  I was so involved in safely navigating very uneveni inclines that I probably missed things I might otherwise have seen.  Does anyone remember those little cardboard periscope affairs that kids used to have at one time?  What a good idea if they wqere available at places like this for the use of little people.  I won't say any more because as far as I know it's a popular attraction..

OK, I think I'll have to leave the rest until tomorrow as this is getting a bit long and I'm going cross-eyed looking at the screen.

Oh, by the way, Marie, our lovely lass at A Year From Oak Cottage, who is away in Canada on her hols, sends her love to everyone.  I had a text from her at the weekend and she is thrilled to bits to be seeing her family again.


Jan said...

I couldnt guess where you had gone ,well done Joan ,its sounds a very nice spot to be ,during all the nice weather ,and you found some great places to visit ,cant wait for the rest Jan xx

Keetha Denise Broyles said...

Looks very lovely - - - - all of it.

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StitchinByTheLake said...

I loved the pictures Angie - almost like being there. :) blessings, marlene

I'm mostly known as 'MA' said...

It all looks lovely. Glad the weather turned out to be good for you. That helps make it more enjoyable for sure. Good to hear of Marie too Thanks for spreading the word.

GrandmaK said...

My what a lovely trip you had. the picture of the train is grand! Have a grand week! Cathy

Jasper said...

Fantastic pic Angie. We still feel guilty though...
Will mail you tomorrow (or, looking at the clock, later today!!!)

Jasper's been on the Watercress Line! Dogs get their rides for £1 - but they have to have their names written on the tickets so they don't sell 'em on to other dogs on Ebay! ;-)

Wish we'd met up. Next time, eh? And is that a TOPLESS picture of the K-man I see there? You're just taunting us ladies with what you've got, aren't you? Cheeky Angie! We love you LOTS. xxx

Ruth & Jasper (aka The Mean Fiddler (with his scabs)...) xxxx

joolzmac said...

Lovely pics of the countryside, Angie. Not long now until we will be visiting the England, staying in Oxford, Warrick and Stratford Upon Avon. Only got a few short days there so our next trip abroad will be to do all of the UK. Enjoy that sunny weather because we ain't getting any!

Cheers - Joolz

Grammy Staffy said...

What a splended holiday you had. The country side looks so beautiful... and it is especially nice when you are staying in a nice place. I want to visit England again. I want to visit with you and Marie and take tours of your beautiful country. I was there 34 years ago but I was in London most of the time and really did not get to see much of the county. London was great but I would like to see the pretty places that you and Marie post about.

We had a great 3 day celebration for the 4th of July. My 3 favorite holidays are Thanksgiving, Christmas and 4th of July. In general most Americans are very patriotic. We love flying our flag.... almost every house has one or more flags out on the 4th. I just love it. I think it is too bad that you don't see many of your Union flags flying in the UK. If I ever move to another country I think one of the things I would miss the most is seeing the American flag.

I am glad that you and Keith had such a nice holiday.
Thanks as always for your sweet comment on my blog. I always love hearing from you. Please tell Marie hello from me when you text her next.
Have a great week. Hugs, Lura

Joan said...

Looks lovely and the weather is glorious too. I have never had a holiday in that part of the world will have to give it a try. Take care Love Joan

Ally Lifewithally said...

Angie sound like you had a great time ~ and so glad the weather was good to you ~ the place you stayed looks lovely and what a beautiful view ~
This is the time of the year for village "Fetes"~ we love going to them and with all the small villages around here we have one almost every week :o) ~ Ally x

Sybil said...

Glad you are back angie after your wee break. seems to have been a great place glad you found it wheelchairable..what a blessing this lovely weather has been....long may it continue,
Thanks for the message from Marie I can well imagine how much she is enjoying herself.
love Sybil xx

Sage said...

Your pictures are so real;I love markets, so I would have been I my glory. Happy to hear the weather was good. We are in a heat wave here!

Marie said...

Playing catch up here Angie. I have been a bit slow on the uptake. We have a new laptop and you know how that goes. (Words keep disappearing on me and going who knows where!) Looks like you had a lovely holiday down South! I am betting everyone who ran into you loved you to bits! (We all do, you know!!) Picked up two Jodi Picault novels when I was away, Nineteen minutes and another one who's name escapes me at the moment!) Yes, I am still brain dead. Wonder when the jet lag will fly the coop! Love you loads! xxoo