We knew we must be leaving the Lakes area for the Cotswalds this morning as the sun was shining and there was very little wind.
The 200 mile drive was quick, primarily along the M6 where the average allowable speed is 70mph. With an early fuel stop we reached Stafford on Avon at 1300hrs and took the opportunity to show Jan, William Shakespear's birth place. After a brief coffee break and a Cream and Strawberry Crepe, we wandered the city centre to discover that a major renovation is underway on the site and not due for completion until 2017. The birth site and the gardens to the rear have been demolished and surrounded by security screeners. The church on the opposite corner is also under going restoration. The visit awakened us to the realization that it had not been "a few years ago" but 7 years since we last visited.
We continued our drive to our hotel in Mickelton, via Chipping Camden an exceptional village in the Cotswalds. Parking was a problem, however, it offered us the opportunity to walk the full length of High Street to St James Church, noting the shops and different construction styles of these lovely aged buildings. Having viewed the Church, we retired to,the Eight Bells Pub for a refreshment. We chatted with the bar manager who was quite impressive, he spoke of Scotland's independence and the 2017 EU referendum.
On our return to the car, Kaye bought a set of silver servers for D&R.
We reached our hotel " The Three Ways House", at Mickelton at 1540hrs, checked in to our separate rooms and retired to the garden for a bubbly. The hotel is quite large for such a small township and appears well patronised by the locals and visitors. The buildings are a mix of old and "new old" and comfortably decorated. A bus group of Americans are also staying.
Our 1900hrs dinner, for the dining room we chose, was a two course affair. Kaye and I had the pork plus dessert, Jan had an entree of asparagus and a salmon main dish . Our two redhead sister waitresses and their deprecating form of humour and the pleasant Lithuanian waitress made for a different form of dinner service; all enjoyable.
We were the last to leave the dining room and as it was still daylight and the sun was in the setting phase, we walked the town, which at 2100hrs was deadly quite. I appreciated standing on the edge of the village, solid building structures to my back as I looked upon green open paddocks of nature, hedgerows cattle and sheep- a different world from that behind me. Hidden in some of the most unlikely spots were a number of palatial homes; some appearing unoccupied. Quite a few small cottages were available for rent.
Bed at 2200hrs, was an unusually late night for all of us