24th of December. Christmas Eve.
With the prospect of a dry day with sunshine I headed east of the city, hoping for another long walk with my camera in hand. It has been quite wet recently so I expected some puddles and mud out there but I guessed that if I mostly stuck to the lanes I would probably be okay.
I parked Clint in Carlton-in-Lindrick not far from the village pond. After a hundred yards, in spite of the day's positive weather forecast, rain began to fall. Not fat tropical rain but thin grey English rain - seeping down from a low hanging sky.
I looked up to the firmament and thought to myself - it's going to be a miserable walk. It was still raining when I reached Hodsock Priory. This is one of the best locations in the land to see snowdrops in the early springtime. I blogged about a previous visit there in this blogpost from 2012.
Today, f I had waited for half an hour, the priory and its sixteenth century gatehouse would have been bathed in sunshine under a blue sky. Such can be the fickleness of the weather experienced by the inhabitants of this famous island on the edge of Europe.
Of course I gathered a good number of photographs along the way as I usually do. None of them pleased me greatly but for your interest I have picked four to accompany this writing.
Back home it wasn't long before I started to prepare a chicken curry with aubergine chunks, red pepper, onions and mushrooms. Served with fluffy white rice and peshwari nan bread.
Our son Ian down in London may have contracted the COVID virus. He went for a test this afternoon. On reflection, it is a good job that he didn't travel north for Christmas as originally planned. The last thing our heavily pregnant daughter needs is a dose of that frigging virus just as her baby emerges into our world.
Happy Christmas! This is the virtual card that I e-mailed to twenty people who did not make our real Christmas card list. Feel free to print it off, mount on stiff card and place upon your mantelpiece...
Merry Christmas to the whole Pudding clan! Just think how different next year with an adorable little Pudding. And hopefully no covid to contend with.ReplyDelete
All of our dreams will come true next year Debby. Merry Christmas!Delete
Merry Christmas Neil! I can't wait to hear of your grandchild's safe arrival.ReplyDelete
What about the card's safe arrival Jennifer? Have a lovely couple of days with The Fish Guy, Gorgeous George and The Parrot of the Year.Delete
Did you receive the card I sent? I hope so! Thank you for the kind wishes!Delete
Sorry. It has not come yet Jennifer.Delete
Those are some awesomely furry bovines. They hardly look real.ReplyDelete
I hope Ian does not have covid, or that it's a mild case if he has it. And he was definitely wise not to have travelled.
Stay safe there, you hear? And Happy Christmas to you and your family.
Thank you Jenny and ring out those Christmas bells in New Scotland. Och aye!Delete
I hope your Ian does not have this wretched virus. My Ian(ten year old grandson) told me that he will see me next year"when all is well".Merry Christmas to you and yours. I think you will be wonderful grandparents!ReplyDelete
Nice to know that there are some even younger Ians around Terry! Thanks for your kind wishes. Happy Christmas!Delete
Good on you for continuing your walk on a miserable day. Merry Christmas to you and your family.ReplyDelete
Thanks for being such a kind companion Red. Merry Christmas to you and your controller.Delete
Merry Christmas, YP, to you and yours! I'm sorry to hear about Ian but yes, if he has Covid, it's a good thing he didn't bring it up your way. Keep us posted on how he's doing.ReplyDelete
Okay Steve. Have a lovely day with Dave and the squirrel hound.Delete
A very happy Christmas to you and yours! XxReplyDelete
Can you hear the echo bouncing back over the hills between us? Happy Christmas Christina! xDelete
The picture of the house by the pond with the pair of swans on it looks very idyllic, chocolate-box like. I can't decide which of the top two is my favourite of this post; the dramatic sky on the first or the watery path on the second, both hold great appeal.ReplyDelete
Hopefully, Ian's test results negative, and even if not, I hope his youth and general health will mean he's over it soon.
Merry Christmas to you, too!
Thanks for being such a pleasant and reliable blogging companion Meike. Happy Christmas!Delete
P.S. The package arrived on the 23rd. I will be opening it soon! Thank you.
Hoping that Ian will be OK. Have a good day (if possible.) Just had my pork pie and Branston pickle for breakfast. It is a Leicester tradition! I put a post on " Leicester Born and Bred"FB last night about pork pie for breakfast and have so far had about 70 comments and over 80 likes!!ReplyDelete
That sounds like a splendid tradition. Never heard of it before. We will be going to Frances's house for a very late breakfast - bagels, cream cheese and smoked salmon.Delete
Happy Christmas The Other Frances! Don't guzzle too much sherry!
I'm a white wine or G & T girl ! Got through a fair amount of wine while on zoom with the family yesterday morning. Lucky you to actually be able to be with family. Make the most of it before you too are in T4 !! Hope you had a lovely day.Delete
'Twas a little island of normality in this dreadful year. Cheers!Delete
P.S. Alcoholics Anonymous have a supportive group in Harpenden.
Happy Christmas YP.ReplyDelete
I hope that you and your family have had a good day Northsider.Delete
As always excellent photos YP, and a reminder that through your camera lens the sky needn't always be blue to make an interesting picture. Love the sky on the first one.ReplyDelete
Wishing you all a very Happy Christmas and a Healthy, happy and safe New Year. It will be such a special time for you all with the arrival of the first of the next generation. We look forward to the exciting news.
Thank you CG. I hope that you have had a nice Christmas Day with happy memories of Christmases past.Delete
I love your description of the rain seeping from a low hanging sky. It perfectly describes our weather here most of the time!ReplyDelete
Hoping that Ian will recover well from whatever it may turn out to be and that you have as merry a Christmas as you possibly can.
Just got home from a lovely Xmas Day with Frances and Stewart and Stewart's parents too. A nice little break from COVIDworld. I hope you had a good day too JayCee.Delete
And were the snowdrops out at Hodstock Priory?ReplyDelete
Happy Christmas from Australia.
No CG - not till February but in the woods I did notice some little green tips poking through the earth. Thanks for your kind Christmas greeting.Delete
Merry Christmas. The village pond photo is great. I hope you son is ok.ReplyDelete
Now you are into Boxing Day Andrew. Happy Boxing Day but no boxing with your partner!Delete
Well, your pictures are gorgeous. The one with the swans is a postcard for sure.ReplyDelete
May Ian be okay. May your Christmas Day be sweet with family. And I hope that by this time next year all of you can be together. You'll have a little toddling child about. Can you imagine?
Thank you for your kind thoughts Mary and I hope that your Christmas Day has gone nicely too. I can imagine but I am sure reality will be rather different.Delete
Hoping Ian is okay. My youngest son's in-laws and many others of their relatives contracted the virus over the past two weeks. Son and his family of five are in quarantine until Dec 29, but fortunately, though exposed, all tested negative. In-laws family didn't believe in the extent of the danger...until now. Luckily, my son and his family always wear masks and try to limit their exposure to others. Hope that your family is able to stay safe as you await your family's blessed event.ReplyDelete
Happy Christmas, Neil, to you and yours.
I hope your youngest son's in-laws get over the virus real soon with no ill-effects. Our Ian has had his test and is now waiting for the result. I hope you have enjoyed a happy Christmas Day Mary.Delete
I hope you had a lovely day and so sorry to hear about Ian. Hope his test comes back negative.ReplyDelete
The pictures, as always, are lovely. We've had mild weather here but everything is still covered in ice and snow.
Thanks for your kind comment Lily. I hope that your Christmas Day was as pleasant as ours. Furthermore, I hope you got to see The Little Guy.Delete
I do hope that Ian does not have it seriously and that it has not been passed on. Stay safe.ReplyDelete
We spoke to him yesterday via "Facetime". He had had rather too much champagne. His test result should reach him in the next day or two. Christmas has reduced the speed of response.Delete