Big Dog and I found another new walk the other day. 6 miles long and 3 hours but beautiful and so good to be outside after being cooped up in a tiny office all week.
The weather started off quite grey
We then climbed an extremely steep hill (very tricky when it's muddy) to the Ox Drove which is quite often full of water.
And it was. Big Dog couldn't resist lying down in the brown, chalky water
This dead tree looked very sculptural
We then reached some woods. Big Dog loves the woods and I was thankful for some shade to eat my chewy bar (cranberry flavour) and drink some water.
Gorgeous aroma of wild garlic
We usually go back at this point but this time I wanted to go further so we walked right through the woods to the other side, where I'd never been before.
Big Dog wanted to explore every path we found
We didn't see a soul and it was so peaceful. I managed to find the right track on the map to descend back down to the valley again. The views were just amazing. We found a nature reserve, a sheep dip and more buttercups than I have ever seen in my life.
I love exploring new walks
So open and stunning, this view - I felt like doing a Julie Andrews 'The hills are alive......'
Look at these buttercups!
We dropped down through Church Bottom, all of our six legs wobbling, to the next village only to find that I was near a pub at midday, very thirsty and without money for a pint! The last part of the walk along the valley back to the bungalow was so hot and dry. I collapsed on the sofa when we got home and Big Dog didn't move for hours.
The Salisbury Festival has been fantastic these past two weeks and I can't believe it is over again for another year. We've seen foreign films, listened to strange music and even been part of a performance!
Eliza Carthy and Jim Moray at the Salisbury Playhouse.
Eliza Carthy is a bonkers bird! She was so energetic, stomping and dancing around the stage in her boots, wildly playing her fiddle. She wore a mad black and white stripey dress with a net skirt underneath and looked like a larger than life girl pirate! I loved her! I was completely wired after the concert and realised that I've still got a wild, festival going, folk loving girl lurking beneath the grey, middle aged woman. It took me back to my veggie, tie dye, patchwork trouser wearing days, ah....
'The Castellers of Vilafranca' in the Cathedral Close
A castell is a human tower built at festivals across Catalunya. The Castellers of Vilfranca have become famous for building their towers in front of international landmarks including Paris’s Eiffel Tower and on the roof of a Manhattan skyscraper. A castell is complete once all the castellers have climbed into place and the last member has climbed to the top and raised one hand with four fingers in the air to symbolise the Catalan flag.
The children that climbed to the top were so small!
Sarah stewarded at this event so in between performances we had tea and cake. One of the houses in the Close had opened it's garden for a fund raising tea party. I do love to be nosy.
I don't think our garden is big enough for a sculpture of this size.
The garden was beautiful. We were serenaded with live music whilst we had our cream tea - v civilised.
Sarah with Judith (fellow steward and colleague). Don't think much of your uniform though girls.
'The Rite of Spring' at the City Hall
Sometimes I am so uncool. There's me with handbag on shoulder in the foyer of the City Hall wondering why the people waiting to go in were looking very arty, relaxed, cool - and without handbags. Once on the dance floor, we were asked to put on headphones and follow instructions accompanied by the sound of Igor Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring. We heard several voices during the performance, depending on which of three channels we could hear. People then started running, leaping and chopping with invisible axes and I realised with an awful sinking feeling that we were the performance! Sarah omitted to tell me this as she knew I wouldn't want to go - and she'd have been right! I'll get her back....... But - what an experience!
Despite my initial horror and wanting to slip out quietly, feigning a sudden illness, I actually LOVED IT!
I ditched the handbag eventually.
Best event of all -
'How like an angel' at Salisbury Cathedral
We entered the Cathedral at 9.30pm to a dark, unlit space and were given torches to explore the building. This was exciting enough without the performance! Circa’s six acrobats joined singers, I Fagiolini to give us the most stunning and unique experience in the eerie semi-darkness of the Cathedral. Some of the feats seemed to defy gravity or human skill as they leapt, fell and tumbled to the atmospheric music from the 11th to 20th centuries. One of the acrobats even fell dramatically from a ledge (on to crash mats) to the gasps of the audience!
I'm sure my mouth was open as I left the Cathedral. I agree with my colleague Sioban when she said that she will never look at a pair of curtains in the same way again!
The weather has been glorious. I have enjoyed the long evenings and the fact that it doesn't get dark until 10pm.
'Lizzie Gardens' in Salisbury, looking over the water meadows
And as the sun was setting
Salisbury Cathedral bathed in a warm evening glow
The Farmers have been busy behind the bungalow, cutting the grass and baling it.
Had a fabby day charity shopping last Friday with my sis and (mad) mother. Samantha and I head banged whilst my mum tapped her knees to 'Born Slippy' full blast on the car stereo on the way in to town. We did get some odd looks. We know how to rock! We had lunch in a gorgeous little cafe in Devizes. It was soooo cute! It would be my dream to work in or own a little tea shop like this, sigh.
'Emily's' tea rooms in Devizes
You are given your own individual mis-matched china and teapots
I would have had a piece of this cake if my sandwich hadn't been so enormous!
Good idea for old holey wellies!
I had tea and cake (again!) the next day at the village fete too.
And here's the new treasured addition to my dresser found in Oxfam in Devizes - 'Alfred Meakin' for £3 - bargain.
I have had so much tea and cake this week but no time to make my own. Talk about a busy week! Out every night. I need to stop now, lie down in a darkened room and breathe slowly.
We found this toad hiding in a bag of compost in the greenhouse
Off I hop.....