Saturday, 1 May 2010

Our Kent Holiday–Day 6: Ightham Moat

My head is fine today - only tender if I really poke it, but there's still quite a lump! Last night I had some bad dreams about falling out of my Rolls Royce as it tipped over sideways over a high drop... My hubby told me this a.m. that I was moaning and crying out in my sleep (I don't remember that and actually only remembered the dream this p.m.) and he was trying to comfort me, but I couldn't hear that as I had earplugs in against his snoring!

Today we went to Ightham Mote which was fabby, fabby, fabby!!! On the way I took this of a bluebell wood - the only thing missing was the sun filtering through the pale fresh green leaves of the beech trees (my favourite tree - I always think of the Oak as the King, and the Beech as the Queen) - the combination of that heavenly blue with the pale green is just magical. Both the leaves and the bluebells seem to float in mid-air. To my mind there is nothing more beautiful than a bluebell wood in May.

01 Bluebell Wood

Now for Ightham Mote:

02 Ightham Mote

32 Entrance to Courtyard

20 Ightham Mote Bridge and Doorway to Courtyard

31 Gate to Back of Courtyard

34 In Centre of Courtyard

This is apparently the only Grade One Listed dog kennel in existence!

39 Grade 1 Listed Dog Kennel

Now for the inside of this beautiful old house.

50 Door in Great Hall with Armour and Antlers

Here's one of my hubby having a little sit-down:

76 Nicholas in the Oriel Room

This is in the drawing room. The wallpaper is Chinese, and hand-painted - the colours are rather dull now but it must have been very pretty and bright once. It depicts lots of different exotic birds.

116 Large Mirror in Drawing Room

130 Conservatory

98 Passageway Windows

Finally I thought this old fashioned thunderbox of a loo might amuse you:

77 Thunderbox Loo

And just in case you don't know what to do, here's a helpful instruction:

78 Pull

On our way "home" to our B & B each day I am extremely tired, and crash out in the car and go right off to sleep. When we get back, my hubby brings the stuff in and I rest on the bed. After we've had our sandwich tea, I get ready for bed, and then my late-evening mental alertness takes over, and I'm ready to tackle the photos. It's actually not an arduous task but very enjoyable, and it's good to be able to keep on top of the hundreds of photos I'm taking, and get them onto the computer and named and filed away in folders, one for each day, ready for editing on the other laptop when we get home. If I was to leave it I'd forget what they were and get in a muddle... It's also fun sharing it as I relive the day while I am doing it.

After we left Ightham Mote, I said to my hubby I didn't think I'd got the energy to go anywhere else - he was all for rushing off to see another place. We were only 3 miles from Sevenoaks and decided to stop there to buy our sandwiches, and I said it seemed a shame to be there and not go and see my old singing teacher. I hadn't got her address or phone no. with me, so my hubby found the no. on directory enquiries and her husband gave us the address and Mrs. Tom Tom delivered us to the door. Margaret was out but expected back soon, so her husband George gave us a cup of tea, and then she came back, and you should have seen her face! Her mouth formed an enormous "O" and she rushed in and said "What are YOU doing here???" and gave me such a hug!!! We had a nice cup of tea with them and caught up with mutual news etc. It was soooo good to see her again - she's a very special lady indeed. I have sung with her for many years at the Dartington International Summer School, and we have become very good friends over the years. She used to teach at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and after she retired, started a new career, composing and recording - she's recently been commissioned to compose some music for the Sixteen, the famous chamber choir conducted by Harry Christophers, who broadcast regularly. Here is her picture - you can see how lovely she is!

Margaret Rizza

Margaret Rizza

It was the perfect end to another lovely day.

I do feel somewhat that I am holidaying on borrowed time - I am far from over my "dip" of recent weeks, but having rests while I can (while in the car and in the early evenings) is keeping me going, and I am highly motivated to have a Good Time and not waste a moment! My hubby is constantly worrying about my energy levels, and I tell him it's worth payback, having such a lovely holiday, and I can crash all I like when we get back home! I'm just about keeping going!

Canterbury tomorrow. We've heard that the weather forecast is heavy rain which doesn't sound any fun at all but we shall see how we get on. We want to go to a service in the Cathedral. My hubby looked at the website and an old friend of his (now under-Dean or some such bigwig post!) is preaching so we are going along to pull faces at him! (Only joking. I promise I'll try to behave, but no guarantees!!)

PS We heard a cuckoo today!

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