9 September 2021


Normanton Church, Rutland

Yesterday was beautifully warm: the power of the sun seeping into our bones. We travelled a few miles to Rutland Water which is a big reservoir - constructed in the 1970's to serve the counties of The East Midlands. We parked near a village with a curious name - Edith Weston. Then we walked along the shore to Normanton Church.

This early nineteenth century church stands on an artificial peninsula. It was saved from the rising flood waters following a successful public campaign. Who says that protesting never changes a thing? They're so wrong.

Phoebe and Frances at Normanton Park Hotel

We carried on with our leisurely walk to the dam at the eastern end of Rutland Water and after turning back we stopped for lunch in the gardens of The Normanton Park Hotel. The setting was perfect but sadly the high cost of the sandwiches was not reflected in their quality. Even so they were good enough to eat. I felt sorry for the young waitress whose awkward gait spoke of hip problems.

Rutland Water from the south shore

We came home to rest and escape from the hot afternoon sun before returning to the village of  Hallaton to visit "The Fox Inn" for our evening meal. The place was not particularly busy but we had to wait forty five minutes for our chosen plates to arrive. The food was good but the wait was excruciating - especially with a baby in a high chair becoming tired and slightly fractious. Some people who arrived after us and ordered their food after us had eaten up and departed before our meals had even arrived. I hate that kind of thing in eateries.

The morning weather should be great again today with rain finally arriving in the early afternoon to bring an end to our mini-heatwave. Ah well. It was smashing while it lasted.

Churchgate, Hallaton last evening


  1. Anonymous1:13 am

    You made the most of the weather. When something like at the pub happens, there is usually someone at our table accused of ordering something difficult but often it something quite simple that has caused meals to be delayed.

  2. Surprising how you can have a great day and one thing can change it. I hate poor service . They could at least tell you what's going on. Did they have to kill the beef?

  3. It's all so pretty and of course you take photos that do it justice.
    I don't like a slow eatery, either. It can make or break the whole experience

  4. Did they offer a reason for the wait? That would be very frustrating to me.

  5. The church on the peninsula looks as if it is half sunken, or like a ship floating on the water with good part of it under the water line. Very special!
    And of course, that photo of Frances and Phoebe is wonderful, two lovely ladies sharing a laugh :-)
    Sorry you had to wait for your food so long. Was there any apology, or a reason given? It reminds me of an afternoon I spent in Knaresborough with my niece. We just wanted sandwiches and a drink at a café before exploring, so as not to lose too much time before catching the next-to-last bus back to Ripon. Our drinks were brought promptly, but no sandwiches... after almost an hour, I went up to the counter and asked; it turned out they had completely forgotten about that part of our order! After profusely apologising, a set of sarnies was quickly rustled up for us; we practically inhaled them and then had about 45 minutes left before having to go to the bus stop.

  6. Another lovely day. You have been so lucky with the weather for your holiday.
    Shame about the pub experience though. I try not to let such things bother me but I am often inwardly seething when it happens.

  7. Librarian has beaten me to it!
    My comment too, is that the church looks as though it's half sunken, but it makes an interesting change to most photos of churches set amongst graveyards. It's in such a beautiful spot.
    What a pretty little place Hallaton looks- It's so annoying that your meal was spoiled by having to wait so long. These days poor service seems to be blamed on Brexit or Covid, or both, depending upon where you are!

  8. Before I read the first paragraph, I was eying the picture of the church and wondering who built it in such a place. You answered that question.

    We've had the same restaurant experience a time or two when in a larger group. I think it has to do with trying to get all the food ready to come out at the same time takes longer than tables with only a couple diners. When we had our cranky babies at restaurants, we either brought our own food or asked for crackers while waiting for the food. We also always encouraged the waitress to bring the kids food first if possible.

  9. That church looks almost like a temple. It's just beautiful.
    And here I was yesterday hoping for you that the heat would break when all the while, you were loving it! Different perspectives/different understandings, eh?
    Phoebe is adorable and looks at her mother like she is her world. Which is exactly how it should be at this stage of the game.
    Having worked in restaurants, I can tell you that the server was probably as anxious about your meal getting out as you were. Things happen in the kitchen that servers have no control over and it can be horribly frustrating for everyone.

  10. Bad service is one of my real dislikes.

  11. Great photos, as always. I wonder why the restaurant took so long? Were you criticizing the punctuation on their menu? :)

  12. The Church reminded me of a English kind of version of the Taj Mahal.

  13. I love all your pictures, Mr. Pudding. Especially the first and last. Both scenes would make lovely paintings. But the best, of course, is Phoebe. I am really old enough that I complain if I am not being served promptly and nothing usually happens after that, so I wait 10 minutes and then leave the establishment. Listen to me....sound like I go out to eat all the time. Just the opposite is true. But, maybe there was not another place to go in that village. Is it a tourist town? Last year on September 9 in Denver, we experienced a foot of wet snow and ice. Today, the temps will be about 36C.

  14. Phoebe is getting so big. She'll be having her first birthday before you know it.


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