Friday, June 11, 2010

The Lake District

By Claire
June 10
We took our time leaving York today, deciding to stop to see Sizergh Castle and Gardens, another National Trust site and right on the way to our campground in The Lake District in northwest England, about 3 hours from Edinburgh, Scotland.

Sizergh Castle

This is our third National Trust site and we love how well organized they are: good parking, bathrooms, tea room, knowledgeable, friendly docents and descriptive literature in every room and almost always a beautiful garden to stroll around; some places even have audio guides. Sizergh more than met our expectations. It’s a beautiful medieval house, extended in Elizabethan and later times with additional rooms, ponds and a lake; the property is crisscrossed by footpaths. The castle is fully furnished. There are numerous family portraits throughout the castle, from the 16th century to the present. “The exceptional wood paneling culminates in the Inlaid Chamber, previously at the Victoria and Albert Museum, and returned here in 1999.” It is still lived in by the Strickland family, who has lived here for over 700 years. We started by touring the gardens.

Kitchen garden

I loved the wildflowers growing out of these stairs.

We wandered around this lake enjoying the reflection of the back of the castle.

In the garden

Doesn’t he look like a “Far Side” sheep?

Our campground was a mere 8 miles from the castle and we are enjoying the endless bunnies and frequent (and loud) pheasants. We’re in the land of Beatrix Potter, after all.

Flopsy and Mopsy

Internet access with our dongle via mobile phone service is nonexistent here. Chuck did manage to make a call from just outside reception, making an appointment to get Homer serviced on Monday. Having the phone has been essential in England during this busy season. We hope to find a place where our dongle will work so we can upload the last three blog posts. At this rate, it may be Edinburgh

Have I mentioned the lack of electrical plugs in the bathrooms? Some campgrounds provide a hair dryer but at one place, it would have been just as effective to have Chuck gently blow on my hair. The last place had a hair dryer but the handle fell off. They usually charge 20P for anywhere from 30 seconds to 4 minutes. Will we ever adjust?

A lake carries you into recesses of feeling otherwise impenetrable. ~ William Wordsworth


elle in umbria said...

Two things strike me as funny: I don't think I can correctly pronounce many of the towns or castles you've so beautifully chronicled in England ~ and supposedly English is my native language!
Is the first castle of today pronounced like "scissor?"

Re: the Far Side:
There's a sheep party going on, but they ALL have worried expressions on their faces.. at the punch bowl, two sheep are talking just as the door opens and there's a friendly dog about to come in...
Sheep: THANK Goodness the Border Collie has arrived! No one knew where to stand, what to eat, what to do...
ha? bah!

punkingee said...

Ah, the Lake District, our favorite place to walk while we lived in Edinburgh. The views from the paths are so perfect.