Saturday 30 July 2016

Dorset's Blue Pool

Wednesday seems a long way back now, but that is the day we went to The Blue Pool, and I wanted to share it with you. Once it was a clay pit developed to serve the need of smokers in the 17th century when tobacco was introduced to the Britain. Then the clay was made into clay pipes and later made fine china crockery. Now it is a tourist attraction with lots of delightful walks where you can take dogs on leads. When they say that, we always cheat and take our long leads, only shortening them when we meet other people.

The pool is famous for the turquoise colour of the water that you can see in the pic. It's not always that colour and Wednesday wasn't sunny all the time, so it wasn't the best conditions to see it, but we were lucky to get some good photos.

I was determined to walk all the way around it. Even though there were much longer routes than the one we took, it was quite a long walk for me and I was glad to reach the tea rooms and sit down for a lovely cream tea to share with my daughter. Grandaughter had her choice of chocolate cake. A quick browse in the little museum and a couple of purchases in the gift shop and we were off to give the dogs a bit of a  run on the Purbeck Way which runs past the entrance. Then back in the car and home after a peaceful and satisfying afternoon.

Monday 25 July 2016

The Garden in July

It's looking pretty good right now.

Regular readers may remember what it was like when we moved here in July 2009.

Monday 18 July 2016

A Weekend Break

On Friday I took a train to Leamington Spa where I met up with some friends. Actually it was two trains because I had to change to a Cross Country route at Southampton. We stayed at the Regent Hotel which is now a Travelodge. It has come down in the world a little because in the 19th century Queen Victoria chose to stay over there, which is remembered in the stained glass windows on the landings of the very grand staircase (even though it has seen better days).

The Queen is also commemorated  in a statue outside the Town Hall, a very different and ornate Victorian building.

That afternoon  we visited the local museum and art gallery which is located in the modernised Pump Rooms of the spa. Here we learned some of the history and how the pump rooms were developed into a famed medical centre with a range of spa treatments available as well as its rejuvenating waters. Outside is an ancient drinks fountain where one of our party gave the water a try. He pronounced it not unpleasant but rather  salty. From the bridge over the River Leam near the Pump Rooms we could see the weir further up. Alongside the river were attractive looking gardens and walks.

This picture is of the bridge in Victorian times, and it is not that different now. The columns in the background are on the facade of the Pump Rooms and also look similar today.

On Saturday, we took a bus to Warwick and found historical buildings that go back a lot further. Do come back in a few days to read more about that.

Wednesday 13 July 2016

Wheal Martyn Again

Someone commented on the weird sculpture in one of the photos in my last post, so I thought I would show you some close ups. It wasn't until we passed it that we realised it was on the approach to the Wheal Martyn China Clay Museum and Country Park. Then it became clear that the sculpture depicted various stages in extracting and transporting the clay.

The clay trail we had walked to get there was part of the route to the port at Charlestown where the clay was loaded onto ships and taken on by sea.

Monday 11 July 2016

Happy Holiday Memories

These pics were taken on the last holiday I had with George. He hated having his photo taken and would never pose or smile. Sometimes I would resort to taking the back view. We stayed at St Austell and this one was taken at its little port of Charlestown. I've written about it before here.

Another day we took the clay trail from St Austell to Wheal Martyn Clay Museum which, by the way, is well worth the visit. We had walked from St Austell more than 2 miles at this point because we hadn't found it easy to find where the trail started.

We were almost at the museum here and found this strange sculpture a little further on. I posted about the clay trails and Wheal Martyn on 2012 as well.

Back at our cottage George had to repair to the dog friendly smoking area outside and made friends with the resident dog.

Photographs bring back so many lovely memories.

Wednesday 6 July 2016

Evening Walk

The sun was still shining after we had eaten and we decided on a walk at Ham Common. I still find it hard to believe I actually live in this beautiful place. 

Of course it was tinged a little with sadness as we walked towards George's seat, where the dogs sniffed around as if they could still sense him.

But it wasn't hard to appreciate the warm, balmy evening.

After this we strolled to the lake that sits behind the sea, before heading back
 to the car park and home.

Sunday 3 July 2016

Things Are Looking up

I just reread my last post and noted a couple of typos that have now been put right. Normally I pride myself on my proofreading skills, so I really hope that's just a blip that doesn't carry over to my professional work, I've finished my article drafts and the first one has been proofed and delivered. Two more go tomorrow and I'll take extra care with the proofing. The last batch goes later in the week.

Healthwise, the week has been just as bad, if not worse than the last one, at least until Friday. Following a night of pain, diarrhoea and sickness, that morning I called the Macmillan nurse and was given a reprieve from the meds for three days. Later I was persuaded to go out, take Rafi for grooming, walk Jade on the beach at Branksome and find a dog friendly pub where I could watch my daughter eat her lunch and even share a bit of it.

We found an excellent inn for that. Called The Plantation, it was decked out in old colonial style with a lovely conservatory restaurant and bar areas where we could take our dog while we ate and drank. They even brought her out her own drink of water in a special dog bowl. The service was superb, making us feel really special. I'd never noticed the place before, but someone said it used to be a residential home so I guess it's new. Sitting in the car on the way home I realised I felt better than I had for weeks.

It has been good ever since, with nights for just sleeping. I went out twice yesterday, dog walking in the morning and to my granddaughter's football presentation in the afternoon. That was in a sports club we'd never been to before, very civilised with a bar and a covered area we could sit. Outside was a children's play area plus various pitches and sports grounds. It is obviously popular with families in the local area as there were plenty of people there who were not associated with Poole youth football teams.

The girls had a great time and all received their awards for playing for a whole season, with one or two singled out for special praise.

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