Saturday, 9 April 2011
An Unexpected Outing.
The weather here in the Yorkshire Dales is beautiful. Today the temperature was 20 Celsius and the sky an unbroken blue. The farmer was busy digging trenches so I was intending to garden (digging up buttercups in our front garden is a long term activity). After an hour and a half in the garden friends called and asked me to go out for a picnic. Needless to say - the gardening took an immediate back seat and I went.
Quite near to where we live in Wensleydale there is a little site of Special Scientific Interest - rare wildflowers on old spoil heaps and a pretty beck. We went there and sat in the dappled shade to eat our sandwiches. Then we crossed a newly built little bridge and walked along the edge of the hillside. The blackthorn was just coming into bloom, the ground was covered in wood sorrel, violets, primroses, wood anemones and ground ivy. The dogs (three in all) had a lovely walk with lots of new smells. The birds were singing to perfection. It was bliss.
Then we did a short recce as my friends are keen birdwatchers and a great grey shrike had been seen in the area - but sadly the bird had flown. A tootle home, stopping in the village of Muker for an ice cream, and still home in time for the Grand National at 4.25pm. I have always half enjoyed - been half terrified - watching the race although I do think it is cruel to put the horses through that and judging by the two tents erected on the course it looks as though two horses may have had to be put down. And the horse that won the race was so dehydrated in the warm sunshine that he was dowsed with buckets of cold water to cool him down.
Back home I did another half hour in the garden before lasagne and a rocket salad for our tea. All in all a lovely day.