Monday, 9 November 2015

A Weekend With Our Friends In The North

When we got together with six friends for Marion's birthday in March we had such a nice weekend that we agreed that we should try to do it again before too long. Unfortunately we couldn't find a date on which all four couples would be free but six of us were able to make this weekend. 

So Friday saw us with the car packed to bursting with everything bar the kitchen sink in preparation for the drive to Malham in the Yorkshire Dales.

We booked a big old Georgian house just outside the village.

The location was perfect with beautiful views across the dale and we soon settled into the place and made ourselves at home.

Mark and Nita stocked us up with plenty of fine wines from their son Tom's shop - The Whalley Wine Shop - and we settled down to a great Friday evening of food, wine and conversation.

The rooms were all quite grand with high ceilings and comfortable furnishings and we all felt very much relaxed and at home.

The plan was to do some walking around Malham but it was midday on Saturday before the sun finally made an appearance.

Mark, Nita Marion Jane and Dave
The sun's appearance was brief and half an hour later it disappeared again. But we did manage to walk to the top of Malham Cove and back to the village before the rain returned.

Climbers tackling the sheer face of the famous cove

We didn't venture far from the house (that's it just right of centre)
After our short but invigorating walk the rain set in with a vengeance and we settled back into the house.

As Dave and Mark settled down to watch England and New Zealand play rugby on TV I drove to Settle to stock up with a few provisions. The clouds thickened on the moors and I found myself on the remote single track roads with just the occasional nosy visitor looming out of the mist.

Fortunately the house was only five minutes walk from the local pub The Lister Arms and on Saturday night we enjoyed dinner together there.

We had another walk planned for Sunday but the weather turned even worse with huge puddles everywhere and one stretch of road under a foot of water and only just passable. So we found ourselves confined to the cars and a brief walk around the shops in Grassington before enjoying a decent Sunday lunch at the Fountaine Inn in Linton.

What we enjoyed most about the weekend was the chance to get together and relax in good company. Perhaps the torrential rain was a Godsend and made the weekend more relaxed than if we had done the eight or nine miles of walks that we had mapped out. We lounged around, did crosswords and puzzles, watched the X Factor, Strictly and Downton and drank perhaps just a little too much of Mark's wine supplies. 

Nita almsot completed a 1,000 piece jigsaw puzzle that we found in the house.

The views from the house must be glorious when the sun shines
We're back in Framlingham now but it won't be long before we're off to St Andrews to see the family. Maybe while we are there we will find time to think about another get together next year.

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