Sunday, 28 April 2013

Keswick in Springtime.

Memorial to John Ruskin 1900

A Saturday in April and the sun shone as it’s supposed to do in springtime. 
Keswick was its usual bustling self, although a strong wind still whipped around the lake making boats bob like corks. However, it was a perfect day for a short walk to Friar’s Crag, a promontory jutting into Derwentwater and described by Ruskin as one of the three most beautiful scenes in Europe.
From Friar's Crag

We almost resented the time we spent in the Theatre by the Lake, watching “Rogue Herries,” Walpole’s play set in Borrowdale at a time when men could sell their womenfolk  in the Keswick market. The large cast of professional and amateur actors portrayed the story well.                                                 

Looking Back Beyond Keswick.

In the interval we wandered out into the sunshine again and were brought back to the present day by the sight of a Rescue helicopter taking off from the grass immediately opposite the theatre doors. 

The Rescue Helicopter

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

A Coincidence.

On Sunday the weather was damp and dismal, but it didn't detract from the pleasure of visiting a spring garden around a solid town house in Bishop Auckland.  This was opened under the National Gardens Scheme.
Mauve and white crocuses filled one very big corner.  Bird boxes hung from every tree; Northumbrian pipers played gentle music from the summer house and water poured from the four faces of a fountain.
But the most interesting thing was my conversation  - over tea and cake - with the present owner, who said the house was built in 1856 by a prominent Bishop Auckland family and had changed hands only twice since then.  She was both surprised and delighted when I added that I owned a grandfather clock that had belonged to that first family.
It is very plain; possibly a kitchen clock and certainly not valuable any more, but I would never part with it.
When the first family came to an end, their furniture was auctioned; my mother went to the sale and she bought the clock for my first home.  It's been with me ever since.
So - a very special Sunday afternoon!