Sunday, 5 April 2015

Heavenly long weekend

We've had a lovely long Easter weekend so far.  It started in the rain and wind on Thursday with a nightmare drive over the hills to the Shropshire/Cheshire border and a golf resort hotel called Hill Valley (which I have mentally re-dubbed Happy Valley for some reason).  The weather was reasonably kind - well, it didn't actually rain on us on Friday but the course was drenched and sodden and extremely muddy.

But that doesn't really matter does it?  It's just good to be away in a nice hotel, playing golf, having a few drinks and a good meal and a change of scene.  The forecast for Friday was terrible so we had agreed that, if it was pouring we would either not go out or walk in when it got too grim.  However, the forecast was overly pessimistic. It was not exactly a lovely, sunny day or anything - constant mizzle which came and went throughout our round - but not the driving rain which had been given.  So, we played the full 18 then headed back over the hill, by now in the driving rain.

We stopped off for a pub lunch on our way back which was good, solid Easter scrans too.

Saturday was another busy day.  Chores all morning while Rich played golf (again).  I just managed to catch a bus into town to get to the pub nice and early so that I could save a big table for all the extras only to be beaten to it by my mate Jimbo!  I used to go to the football with Nicola and Jim years ago before they moved away from Sheffield and I took up with Rich so it was great to catch with my old muckers.  Also good to meet Nicola's new chap, Andre.  She's been resolutely single for years but he seems to be a really nice bloke.  Dutch, funny, sensible and they seem to fit.  Yay!! Isn't it great when your pals get fixed up?

Since those days watching football together we have all broken up with our significant others and then found someone new and we all seem to be much happier this time around.  Maybe relationships are too tricky to be trusted to the young??

After the football we all met up for a meal in Sheffield.  Kerry,now back with the bloke she broke up with on Christmas Day so there was the, erm, awkward meeting with him to get through.  Especially awkward for Rich as he had been more outspoken in expressing his views about the chap than me.  It could have been awful but they were both proper grown ups and the chap seems much more relaxed and willing to listen as well as speak this time around so, in the end, we all had a good night out!

True to form Nicola and Jim and their other halves gibbed early and went back to the hotel straight after the meal.  Lightweights!  We had a few more drinks with Kerry and Rolie so all must have been well.  At this time, I eventually spotted the enormous rock of a diamond on her left hand.  Yep, they're engaged!  Speedy but I must say, she seems very happy so who am I to judge??

So, that's all 4 of us hooked up and happy and very nice to see too.

Sunday could have been golf but I'm pleased it was not.  We were talking about painting and chores but ended up chucking the dogs in the car and heading out onto the hills.  What started out as a cool, cloudy day, once we hit the moor all fleeced up, turned into a glorious, warm spring day.  T-shirt weather!!

I'm so glad we took the day.  We haven't been out for a proper walk other than round the usual stomping grounds of Bradwell or Bamford for months.  We parked at Surprise View Car Park above Hathersage and headed up to the Saltcellar rocks and then over to Carl Wark, along Burbage Brook to Padley Gorge and then back to the car for an ice cream!  Yes, you heard me - an ice cream and it was gooooood too!!

Near the rocks and the car park, it was busy with groups of friends and families.  But, just a few hundreds yards away, it was peaceful.  The moors absorb the crowd.


I was feeling slimmer and sleeker in my new jeans a size smaller than the old ones.  Then I see the pics and realise I have a long way to go.  Still lumpy and bumpy just a size smaller!  I'm not knocking myself really, what I see first on this photo is how happy I look with that big smile plastered across my mush.  I had a great day and was healthy too so what's not to like?  Hopefully next spring I'll have the figure I want but, in the meantime, I'm not going to worry about the (generous) size 16 ass, tummy and thighs!

The dogs were in heaven too.  They loved it up there.  Scampering up and over the rocks, snuffling through the heather and the bracken, slurping water out of puddles, exploring nooks and crannies, paddling in the marshy bits and the brook.  Pure doggie heaven.

We didn't walk up to Higger Tor - it was rammed, you could see the crowds like ants swarming all over the rocks.  It is very close to the road so all the lazy gits can go that far and no further.  We went instead to Carl Wark which is an Iron Age hill fort.  Over 2,500 years old!!  How amazing it that?  I can't believe there weren't more people up there but it was good to be able to poke around without the crowds.

This valley (Burbage) used to heavily wooded with conifer plantations but they have nearly all been felled now.  I wonder if they are going to replant with deciduous woodland or leave it to revert to open moorland?

We had to scramble to find a spot to cross the Brook, took me back to being a kid again.

It was a big leap!

Anyway, while we were enjoying our ice creams under begging doggie eyes, a bloke and his young daughter approached us.  She had eaten all she could of her ice cream and wondered if the dogs wanted the rest??  Oh. My. God!  Best. Walk. Ever!!

Little Sophia resolutely held onto the cone while first Shelagh then Minty licked happily away.  We were happily surprised at how well Minty did, only tugging the cone out of her hands once all the ice cream had gone.  It was a very sweet.

So, we're all tired but happy now.  Dogs sleepy dreaming of ice cream (probably)!

1 comment:

Peridot said...

What fabulous photos. Especially the portrait layout one. Also you look great too.