Saturday, 27 September 2014

Market Day in Warwick

Saturday is market day in Warwick and the various stalls were doing a good trade in the town square.

One stall was unlike the rest - beautiful birds of prey, rescued from captive breeding but unfortunately unable to be released into the wild.  The Rescue Centre was raising money to support the programme.

In addition to the owls there was a young kestrel who had spread his wings - possibly to keep cool?

It gave him a slightly doleful appearance and it was striking to see how large his wings were in relation to his body.

All of the birds were very handsome and with the exception of a Barn Owl who was fast asleep, very alert!

One shop had some rather gruesome Halloween masks..

Warwick still has its East and West gates and by each there is a Victorian postbox.

The 1856 design of this one at Eastgate is unusual - very slender and with a vertical slot for (quite small) letters. The Victorian postbox in Laura Place in Bath has a 'normal', horizontal slot I am sure.  Perhaps it is a later version.

Friday, 26 September 2014

Visit to Tetbury

The Cotswold town of Tetbury has many lovely old buildings - not least the very impressive parish church.

Stopping off en route to the Fosse Way and back to Leamington I had a lovely lunch out with a friend who has recently moved.

The beautiful stone-built cottage has a sunny aspect and a lovely private garden.
The cottage itself has a wonderful light and airy kitchen..

Which opens onto the garden..

Thursday, 25 September 2014

Teasel and friends

We had a lovely day today with Andrew and Jan, including enjoying the sunshine out in the garden.

Teasel found her own special spot to sunbathe on the warm stone.

Misty was nowhere to be seen but when it was time for dinner there was still company for Teasel as she ate..

And, after dinner,  time to pose for a photo or two..

Wednesday, 24 September 2014

Sunday Lunch v Sunday Brunch

This rather statuesque creation was my  roast dinner on Sunday when we went out with Lauren and James.  Complete with Yorkshire pud (even though I had pork), it was good - even though I am not sure about the stacked up style of presentation.  The vegetables?  They are hidden behind..

I then had the pleasure of Sunday lunch 'leftovers' at the farm on Monday, also very good.

Food for thought, then, about why the Sunday roast is such a British institution - so much so that it defines us in the eyes of the French who call us 'Les Rosbifs'.

I may be wrong, but in the US there does not seem to be a Sunday roast tradition and although there are some roasting cuts of meat available in the supermarket they are not there in the same variety or quantity as here.

The US tradition that we have noted and enjoyed in Reston is Sunday Brunch, particularly at Jackson's in the town centre.  This restaurant, the Lucky Lounge, carries the name of a chef who was obviously much loved and respected  - as shown by this tribute to him on the wall of the restaurant when we visited a couple of Sundays ago..

For once I didn't photograph the food that we ate there - suffice to say that the Filet Mignon with eggs was a very tasty alternative to a roast beef dinner!

Tuesday, 23 September 2014

Glorious flowers!

The Morning Glory flowers climbing up the wall are as glorious as their name suggests.  They are short-lived flowers - the flower on the left (above) came out this morning and the one on the right was from yesterday.

If it is a warm day or cold night then often they are completely over by the end of just one day and the colour changes completely from bright blue to pink and purple.

Those of you who follow Maggie's blog (FarmersWifeDaybyDay) will already have seen her lovely photos of another glorious plant in Mum's garden, the Amaryllis Belladonna (colloquially, 'Naked Lady').

Individually the flowers are beautiful..

But they are most striking when viewed as a clump on thie dark stems.

Monday, 22 September 2014

All-Terrain Adventure

Lovely as always to spend a day at the farm with Maggie and family and when I was offered a trip out to see the sheep and calves by Kate I was keen to accept, envisaging a trip in her brand-new-and -still-quite-shiny-despite a bit of 'mud' vehicle.

My illusions were soon shattered, this was to be the full fresh air and bumpy field experience..

First stop to feed the calves, with Sky keeping a close eye on them.

Then the downhill run to the sheep field..

Maggie and I recalled a similar ride, though in the slightly different environment of the streets of New York, earlier in the year..  Compare and contrast..

(At least today's ride didn't cost us premium rates!)

After counting slightly pink sheep at dusk we headed back to the farm in time to catch Emma and Margot under the floodlights..

Sunday, 21 September 2014

Back to the Fifties?

A wonderful, 1950's themed ice-cream parlour has opened in Leamington and in town today to do some shopping we decided we should check it out..

We were very taken with the decor and atmosphere which we thought would not have been out of place across the pond.

(One customer was not so easily pleased - seeing the decor he came in but once realising that the juke box was not actually playing Elvis he turned in his heel and went out again).

The ice-cream selection was very good too (but we failed to photograph having spent ages making our choices from the extensive menu).

David poses in front of his new mantra!

I am including this last photo as it shows the decor rather well - except for the mural which seems to have been slightly photo-bombed by the light shade!!  

Our mission when we return to the US should perhaps be to seek out an authentic 1950's ice cream parlour for comparison purposes...