Wednesday, 29 November 2017

A November Photo Album

I've not been able to blog as we've been up in the caravan in St Andrews (with the notorious lack of WIFI) but we're back in Suffolk now.

My mum, who will be 92 in a few weeks, joined us for a week and it was a great opportunity for Rose and Melody to see their Great Nanna.

Here are some photos from our trip.

Mum with the girls

I love reading to the granddaughters. Not the most flattering photo - I don't have a double chin - honestly.

We took Mum to Cineworld Dundee
Okay I know it's a kids' film but Paddington was great.
Sarah, Marion and Mum

The weather in St Andrews was cold for most of our stay with a few very wet days but after we took Mum home on Saturday it brightened up again and we had a glorious day at the nearby Cambo Estate which has a footpath that runs to the coast.

Rose and Melody loved clambering across the rocks and looking for sea glass and shells.

Three generations together.

Trying out the new long exposure feature on the iPhone
After ten days it was time to drive back to Suffolk. We had a trouble free journey.

Apart from a small chip in the windscreen that developed into a large crack. That's four punctures and two windscreens since March. Lucky or what?

The book is doing well and seems to be enjoyed by the readers. It would be great if I could get the sales to take off and see more tweets and reviews like these.

In other news I've been doing a little bit of "antiquing" and bought these lovely peices of art pottery for our spare bedroom from Theatre Antiques in Framlingham.

I also bought this fabulous Carlton Ware Art Deco jam pot that I thought would sell for loads on eBay. -- It didn't.

And, of course, I did manage some detecting time in November. Here is what turned up.
Short days, long shadows.

Medieval farthing Edward I

Obverse of the farthing with a buckle complete with pin from around the same date

Four more musket balls.

To add to the collection

Two more medieval cut farthings
Interesting paw foot from a casket or similar. Date uncertain but probably not ancient.
Cast hand. Possibly part of a Victorian paper clip.
Military cap badge. Royal Something Corps. Not sure of the regiment.
Voided short cross cut half medieval penny.
Queen Victoria penny made into a pendant.
Other bits and bobs

Tuesday, 7 November 2017

Another Wonderful Friends' Get Together - This Time At Gate House Coniston

If you've been following this blog for a few years you will have read that Marion and I have enjoyed some great weekends with our six best friends twice a year for the last few years. Last weekend was weekend get together number five and this time all eight of us made it for the third time. We were back in the Lake District and, after our last rental stay in Cumbria at Waternook in Ullswater, it was going to be extremely difficult to find a property that would come close.

But Marion is an absolute star in tracking down the best holiday lets available and she found us Gate House cottage in Coniston which is let by The Coppermines Lakes Cottages  And what a fabulous place it was. With four spacious bedrooms (each with luxurious ensuite bathroom ) and three living rooms so we weren't all on top of each other twenty-four hours of the day, this is a fabulous property and well worth the weekend rental. The property has been recently refurbished and everything is of the very highest quality. It's strongly recommended both for the quality of accommodation and the ideal location.  

A small stream flowed behind the cottage's lovely slate terrace. 
Friday night got off to a bang with a visit to Coniston's annual fireworks display. And what a display! I timed it at over 27 minutes and, whilst the first five minutes were somewhat slow, the display grew to a spectacular finale as good as we've ever seen. We returned to the house for a simple meal of homemade venison pies supplied by Leo's Deli in Framlingham.

We were fortunate to be blessed with glorious weather for both days.

On Saturday we walked to Tarn Hows 

Tarn Hows holds some extremely special memories for me. In the early 1960s when the Lakes were not as accessible as they are today, our family rented Rose Castle, a tiny stone cottage nestled above the tarn and still there today. In those days there were virtually no visitors to the tarn and my Mum would shout me back from my fishing trips from the top of the hill. It was en route to Tarn Howes that I proposed to Marion nine years or so later 

One of Cumbria's finest viewpoints

The view from the Gate House front door.
The weather was even better on Sunday than on Saturday so six of us walked up the Coppermines valley to Coniston Old Man with two of the group deciding to explore the lake.
Coppermines Valley

The going was initially easy.

But before long we found ourselves at pretty high altitude with some magnificent views.

Mark with Dave who demonstrated his map reading skills yet again.

Quite a walk for a couple of sixty somethings

Almost on top of the world
Walking this ridge was fun

While the six of us were on top of Coniston Old Man , Dave and Jane sent us this photo from their more relaxed ramble

After a great evening at Steam Bistro in Coniston on Saturday night we cooked at home again on Sunday courtesy of Leo's and the excellent Badu's curries. Although it appears in this photo that the woment were doing all the work, the men (out of shot) were equally hard at it.


Sadly Dave and Jane had to leave shortly after our curry on Sunday and head back ready for work on Monday.

But the rest of us enjoyed a bit of music and some quizzing provided by Mark whose wonderful performance of The Proclaimers Five Hundred Miles will stay with me forever.

So that's it. Six months of planning and another friends' weekend is over. Now it's time to get started on planning the next one.

For those of you interested in my detecting finds. I only had one trip out last week. Here is what turned up.

Henry III Cut Half Penny Canterbury moneyer Henri
Super medieval buckle c1350-1400 still with its pin intact
Edward III half penny
Charles I rose farthing
Spindle weight.