This post hardly needs words as well as pictures. M has been doing a great deal of intense court work lately and this short break coincided with the end of a long London based case. Apart from having to constantly manage his diary by phone we did manage to relax for a few days. In fact M was quite taken with the many fields of lambs, at one stage sitting on a bench in amongst them, some curious, some scampering away, some happy to pose for photographs!
I loved the simplicity of this particular hut. Our bathroom and simple kitchen facilities were in part of a barn a short walk away. This wasn't ideal and meant we had a couple of early starts to dash to the bathroom. It would probably have been a good idea not to have spent the evenings in the pub!
Supplies of firewood were not exactly generous and we wished we had bought our own or located some. We both agreed that it would be useful for the owners to spend a night or two in their hut because it was clear they never had. A fold away table of some kind would have been handy and a second chair by the fire could easily have fitted in if the small free standing shelf unit was replaced by a wall mounted wooden shelf rack of some kind. The bed however, was extremely comfortable though M, a seasoned caravan person, couldn't help but notice the hut needed 'levelling'.
Nearby Penrith was as much as we needed in the way of a slow day out. The many coffee breaks were also knee rests but we did manage to gather a few second hand books, some handmade fudge for the kids, an old set of weighing scales and last but not least, a small stash of recycled cotton yarn from 'Penrith Crafts'. There was also a fabulous artisan bakery and deli where we managed to cobble together a tasty no cook supper; simple rustic food served on an upturned wooden crate with a large mug of tea, sitting outside in the last of the sunshine. For me, it doesn't get much better than that.
We've been on the lookout for old, rustic light fittings for our conservatory and old metal chairs to accompany an upcycled table. So Brunswick Yard was a highlight of our trip to Penrith, it's not huge but there was quite a lot of stock. We didn't find what we were looking for but it was fascinating. Located on a rooftop terrace overlooking the yard and the town was a small cafe with lots of upcycled touches like the old drain covers made into planters. The hot chocolate was pretty good too.
This was the only hut we've stayed in that was completely off grid. Once upon a time I'd have been able to read by candle light but not anymore so we headed off to check out the local pubs. M and I are not pub types usually and we rarely drink but we had two lovely evenings in two very different pubs. The first was a pie and cider type arrangement with an assortment of locals who were pretty hard to understand. I noticed M doing a few of the tricks I usually employ when I'm struggling to hear, like smiling and nodding and hoping you've done that at the right time.
The second pub was an old pub with a modernised interior; all bleached oak floors and furniture, brown leather sofas and designer beer. We only stayed because it would have been rude to walk out on the live entertainment which didn't have a huge audience to begin with. Apparently it was Irish Folk and they were very good. I couldn't say, I just can't hear music I'm not already familiar with. It was fun watching the various instruments in action and also the constant stream of random musicians turning up half way through a song and just joining in.
So, it's back to reality today. Piles of laundry, soggy dogs, mouths to feed, pounding rock music through bedroom doors, hoovering to be done, bills to pay, problems to sort out. A knee that doesn't seem to be responding to a week's worth of quad exercises. All bearable as long as we start thinking about booking another short break. A hut by the sea maybe?