A window into the life of a professional geek, wife and mother (and nonni), stitcher/designer, bibliophile, old-school gamer, and whatever other roles she finds herself in.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Friends in distant places (UK trip 1/9)

Warrington, Friday 23 June 2006
It feels good to be in England once again, and away from the heat and humidity of Florida!
We left Florida yesterday around midday, to temperatures in the mid 80F's and 90% humidity. Here, it's in the mid 50s and it feels much nicer.
Our flight over was mostly uneventful. We hit some turbulence on the JFK-to-Manchester leg, but at 6 hours it was the shortest transatlantic flight I've ever taken. I may have slept, but if so, it was in 10-minute increments.
We arrived in Manchester around 9am, and after the usual long wait at Passport Control, we were officially in the UK. Baggage claim was very quick, however, and all of our luggage arrived safely. The arrival snafu this trip was with the rental car...
We had reserved an automatic sedan, but when we went to pick it up, there were none available. Apparently there has been a string of automatics being returned with tire damage, so none were available. A few calls and an hour later, we did get an automatic, but in a minivan.
Having acquired transport, we drove to a hotel in Warrington, since we don't check-in at Hawes until tomorrow. The hotel has lavender, and pink tea roses in the landscaping. Lavender outside the hotel A small green area on the grounds has some sort of bramble berry in bloom, and yellow primroses and some sort of purple flower. The clover is in bloom, and with a less intense sun than at home, it's delightful to be outside.
We met my friend Allie for dinner - she had come up from around Birmingham. We drove into town, and ate at a pub called the Dog and Partridge. I had a yorkshire pudding with pork+leek sausage, and mash - very good! I also had a pint of cider. The pub was full, so we ate outside since the weather was so beautiful. It will be so difficult returning to Florida after this trip...

Hawes, Saturday 24 June 2006
We awoke to a slight drizzle and overcast skies. After breakfast in Warrington, we drove through the countryside to Leeds, to my friend Karoline's house, where I met a number of fellow stitchers. There were Pat, Allie, Paula, Lindsay and her DH Russ, Kate, Rachel, Scully, Angela, Michelle, and Gina as well as Karoline and myself.Pat, Allie, and Paula We spent several hours talking and comparing stitching while DD, DH, and DsS went with Karoline's DH over to the Royal Armouries. Karoline has a very lovely house and a garden with herbs and roses, and I think we all had a good time, especially once the sun came out and the garden was a lovely place to be in.
[Ed: Karoline has a nice entry on the get-together]Karoline's lovely garden
After leaving Karoline's, we picked up some basic groceries at Tesco, then drove up the A1, then on a narrow country road through the Yorkshire Dales to Hawes. We saw a lot of livestock, including a number of lambs, as we drove through a series of very small towns. We arrived in Hawes around 7pm, and checked into the cottage. The hills are sparsely populated (except by sheep), and the air smells more clean and earthy than back home. I can't wait to see what the surrounding environs look like during the brighter sunlight of midday.

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