It is already Thursday. I have been staying at the Holyrood Hotel. I have eaten in the Mai Thai three nights running. I really must go and find somewhere else to eat for a change. It is though so easy to go there and eat. Good food, and the Carlsberg Special is only £2.50. (Do you hear that, Jake, £2.50!) Free Internet access and a friendly bunch who run it. Last night football was on, and some celebrations from the Scots who won their game. Hey and so did England, smashed the Russians 3 – 0.
Well I thought this might have been my last week here, but it does look that I may be here for a couple more weeks. Should be good for the bonus.
Weather wise, the sun has shone every day, no rain. Today is the worst day, a bit on the overcast side. Some of the thousands of Americans packing out breakfast and being their usual painful Americans selves, commented that it was going to rain in Glasgow, and might make it to Edinburgh. Hope not as I walked into work in short sleeves. Ah, and North Bridge was closed, I assume by another jumper, so had to walk down into the rail station and out the other side.
Tried to log on to the site selling Led Zeppelin tickets, http://www.ahmettribute.com/, does not seem active yet. Little chance I will get one of the 20,000 tickets priced at £125. But I will give it a go.
Saturday afternoon thought it about time to use NT cards, but where to go? Chose Greys Court in Oxfordshire; slight en route diversion due to someone shifting signage around (seems to happen a lot lately).
On arrival were told it was unusual for the house to be open on a Saturday (later surreptitious inspection of guide book showed this to be true, but R opted for convenient silence on subject). Decided to view house, ice-house, grounds, tower & tea shop followed by donkey & horse wheels in that order. House a picture of Tudor elegance from the outside. Only part of ground floor is viewable. Some amazing plasterwork ceilings greet you from the hall onwards. R worried over cracks in one room, but outside inspection didn’t show them (and R always worried over cracks in houses). Delightful rooms which speak of it still being a well-loved lived in house, (although the tv seemed a tad too casual). The kitchen was interesting – a strange mixture of Tudor panels, huge Aga in correspondingly huge inglenook and modern units, but a lovely tiny wall-mounted bee-hive ornamented bookshelf with an Elizabeth David amongst the cookbooks.
Ice-house was thatched and hence unlike any other we’d seen. Nearby (R thought) were signs of v old fortifications (wonder if the house guide book mentions them?). Gardens good, especially the wisteria walled garden where the plant forms the roof. Good views from the tower and we were told May was a good time to re-visit and look down on the wisteria and bluebells. Must make a Google calendar note and also note to bring camera next time. Donkey wheel a bit sad thinking of the poor animals bringing up the water from the well. S thought it over engineered. Still looked as though it could be used today.
Been here three days now, flew up on Monday. Funny flight, the captain took us to 38,000 ft where there was thin cloud, and it was rough, so he had to drop 2,000 ft and it was smooth flight, but a 120 mile an hour head wind. Took off late, London air traffic control, but we are in Luton, miles away fom London, and you don’t see any other aircraft. They obviously need more advanced systems that can figure this out.
Staying down in the Hollyrood, so I have breakfast every day, and the Mai Thai for supper. I wish I was logical and had eaten my way through the menu in order. Instead I dither and pick and choose. Now I have no idea which menu items I have not eaten.
Spent Saturday morning shopping, generally unsuccessfully, and the afternoon gardening. There is so much work to be done there this autumn. Definitely going to be a chain saw massacre on some the trees. They all seem to have grown suddenly, and the ones near the house will need a little trimming back. Then the graveyard has some dead elms which should come down. Looks like the wood store will be full for the winter.
R wants to replace the Pampas grass with some butterfly friendly plant. G must have overheard what I said about setting it on fire and roasting the hedgehogs living in it, because he sent R an article on hedgehog friendly gardening.
Sunday went to M&D for lunch and tea. Had a leg of lamb this time, roasted and not BBQed. Very good indeed. Also picked up our 25th wedding anniversary present. A lovely Ann Blockley painting and a silver topped jar with a bee in the decoration. As we left it started pouring with rain, expected a bad journey home, but luckily it all cleared up on the M40.