Tuesday, 24 March 2015

Birthday Celebrations

We're briefly back in Framlingham for a few days before we head to St Andrews for Easter. Last week we celebrated Marion's 60th birthday and went up to Kirkby Lonsdale in Cumbria where we rented a small cottage for a short break.

Fortunately we have stayed at the lovely Chapel Cottage before so we knew that the access would be too narrow for our other car and went in the smaller one instead. Even then it was a tight squeeze but with one of us directing each time we left or arrived at the cottage we got through the week unscathed. 

It was a quiet few days. We visited some of our old stomping grounds.

The River Walk At Kirkby Lonsdale

And The Famous Ingleton Waterfalls Walk
It's still a lovely walk around Ingleton's falls but the health and safety people seem to have gone mad with the fences. Our son Paul was an adventurous child but managed to get around the walk many times unscathed without all the (sometimes unsightly) fences.

On Wednesday, friends Mark and Nita Jones joined us and very kindly treated us to a champagne afternoon tea at the lovely old Hipping Hall hotel to celebrate Marion's birthday the following day. 

Marion's birthday was a quiet day and we ended it with some very good fish and chips from the local Kirkby Lonsdale chippy washed down with a nice bottle of white wine.

And then it was off to the famous "The Inn At Whitewell" to meet up with three couples who have been our friends for a long time. Mark and Nita (above) along with David and Janet Wareing and David and Jane Haworth joined us for dinner and a night at the lovely hotel.

The hotel put on an excellent meal

The rooms were all spacious and beautifully furnished (doesn't Marion look good for 60?)

And we certainly had a "room with a view"

Marion with best friend Jane

We blew away the cobwebs on Saturday morning with a walk of about five miles from the inn and across some beautiful countryside. 

The weather was kind to us for the whole week and we finished with a fabulous pub lunch at the Parkers Arms in nearby Newton where it was almost warm enough to dine outside. The food at this pub was excellent and we enjoyed some of their many specialities which included crispy potato skins, delicious potted shrimps, home made game pie with raised hot water crusts and a fabulous Portuguese egg custard dessert. After the fine meal at Whitewell the night before I think everyone was pretty well stuffed as we parted ways and headed back to our various homes. It was great to meet up with our friends, we miss them all here in Suffolk but plans are in hand to see them again in the not too distant future.

In other news, the eBay dabbling continues and the fabulous tureen sold for £110 and is now on its way to Australia. The original high bidder turned out to be a rogue who has been bidding on tons of stuff and not paying (and has now been kicked off eBay) but fortunately there's a second chance offer system and the underbidder was able to buy. 

I'm now selling this lovely French faience planter made by the St Cement factory in around 1900 and again found on eBay for a few pounds. I'm hopeful that this will do very well as it's completely hand painted and a very fine and pretty piece of antique French pottery.

After four gym classes in the last 24 hours I'm getting back some of the fitness lost in a week of wining and dining. Sadly Marion has picked up a very heavy cold and blocked sinuses and is having to take things easy.