Day four of our trip involved getting to the Lake District. This was a more laborious process than we might have hoped, but in the end, it was completely worth the effort. Today’s post is just an orientation to the Lake District, but trying to cram it all into one post was getting too long-winded. But be sure to come back soon for the good stuff!
Blast! We missed our train to the Lake District by literally 10 seconds. That awful slow-motion moment when the train pulls away just as you run up to the platform. That was a pretty £30 we had to pay to get on the next train! In addition to which we waited at this quiet little station for nearly an hour to catch our connection four-minute train to Kendal, the next stop.
From Kendal, we rented a car. Repeat, we rented a car. Since I know how to drive stick shift and C is the best navigator EVER, I was the lucky driver for our three days in the Lake District. I cannot explain just how terrifying and anxiety-inducing this was. Whoever thought of putting the steering wheel on the right side of the car and the car on the left side of the road with oncoming traffic coming at you along narrow country roads hedged in by rocks and twigs? Not to mention shifting gears with your left hand—my left-brain/right-brain got all jumbled!—and having to stop and start the car on steep hills.
Having managed all that, I feel like I have accomplished something major in my life… something that I would like to never have to attempt again.
1. Arrival at Hawes Farm
The stress of driving the car was counteracted by just how beautiful the scenery was as we neared Hawes Farm, outside the small village of Broughton-in-Furness. The sun shone on fields, which we could see over the wildflower-laced hedges whenever we crested a hill. Such loveliness! We got lost a few times on the way to Hawes Farm, but the delays got us there just in time to see the neighbors herding their sheep down the hill.
“Meeeehhhh”! In the very upper left, a border collie makes sure the sheep are moving right along.
Hawes Farm is a cozy cottage nestled against a hill. The property is actually owned by the National Trust, with parts of the house dating back to the 1500s, and painstakingly preserved.
Behind are acres of pastureland and the mountains, barren and rocky by contrast. A real retreat from the noise and bustle of the city; here, nothing interrupts the silence but the curious bleating of sheep as you pass them by.
The awesome thing about having sheep everywhere is this disinterested stare they give you when you’re nearby. As they munch on some grass, they look up, continuing to munch munch, then casually look away and carry on with things. It’s only when you inch closer and closer that they get concerned and prance away. But mostly, these guys are champs at being blase. Even their “meeehhh” bleating sounds so over it.
And yet something about it is so endearing and makes you love them all the more. The life of sheep just seems so simple.
This little guy fell in love with us right back. We met him on the roadside as we walked down to the local pub for dinner. He was hungry, and he followed C all the way down the lane, hoping for some milk. Poor confused little lamb.
We had a surprisingly tasty dinner at the High Cross Inn. Just a little local establishment, with a fire blazing, regulars watching football, the amiable bartender having not a few drinks himself, dominoes and cards to keep you entertained. But absolutely delicious. Apparently you have to leave London to get a taste of British cuisine at its finest! Aside from the obvious chips, carrots and broccoli, I’m trying to remember the meat. Pork, maybe? If I can’t recall, it’s probably because it tasted so good and I ate it so fast.
Come back soon for a world of loveliness and literature in the Lake District!!