Delphine Woods - Enthusiastic, budding author
Yorkshire House Sit (Part 2)
Our Yorkshire house sit has come to an end. What a wonderful time we had! The Dales are a truly beautiful place, where the sky stretches unendingly when the sun shines, or the clouds sink into your skin when the sun hides itself away. The shades of green vary from brightest emerald to dullest khaki, and purple piles of heather fuzz the moorland horizon.
Our second week was not quite as ‘go! go! go!’ as our first. Our days were mainly spent pottering, writing, doing home workouts and yoga practices, and, of course, eating!
One very memorable day was when we visited Hardcastle Crags. This place consists of over 400 acres of woodland and an old mill. We walked beside the tumbling, shallow river, where the sun made the peaty water shine red, and the trees above bathed us in dappled light. Over slippery stones we trekked upwards, past crashing waterfalls and dripping, mossy earth. The bridge that we would have liked to cross had been swept away in the floods from the previous year, so we plodded farther along, then precariously made our way down the side of a steep slope to reach another bridge that promised our quick return to the café.
In the Victorian era, the mill and surrounding land was made into a tourist attraction, and the upper floor was converted into a restaurant, partitioned for first and second classes. Only in the mid-1900's did its popularity start to wane, however, it was very much in demand on the day we visited, and was brimming with young families, couples, and older people, all out enjoying the sunshine and glorious countryside, and watching out for any ferocious northern hairy wood ants! I would definitely recommend a visit if you are near Hebden Bridge.
Other than that long outing, we mainly stayed in the safety of our borrowed home, avoiding any bank holiday horrors. We snuggled with our fostered cat (when he let us), watched films and cleaned all the fish.
On our penultimate day the sun was shining fiercely and we enjoyed the marvellous view from the patio for the last time. The following morning was spent cleaning and stocking up on food essentials for when the hosts returned home and stroking the cat goodbye. Just after midday we were back on the motorway and heading south.
We took the scenic route home and wound our way through north Shropshire and into its southern area. The sun came out once again and shone on rolling pastures and silvery snaking rivers. However much we enjoyed Yorkshire and its wide, craggy moorland and cliff faces, there is something gentile and calming about our homeland of Shropshire, where red brick houses stand proudly and optimistically amidst tranquil countryside. It was nice to be home.