26 September 2011
Oh my, oh my... The Brits sure do good scenery. They are the champions of bucolic bliss. We're in Derbyshire, sitting in a 18th century stone pub (beams & all) enjoying a half pint of Moor Top after a mind-blowng day of history. It started with a damp, misty morning in the gardens of Chatsworth, the digs of Peregrine "Stoker" Cavendish, the 11th Duke of Devonshire. Every Sept they hold a sculpture exhibition within the gardens which was quite sensational, despite it being autumn here & the garden not being in tiptop shape. The juxtaposition of ultra-modern sculpture amongst classical garden ornaments and the imposing architecture of the house was fabulous. Oh I wish I could share some photos, photos, photos! Arrrggghh..... I am looking at the pub menu. They have grouse & pheasant on tonight, from the grounds of Chatsworthh. They also have a "Barter Board" with a list of the veggies they are prepared to trade for beer! Love it! We could have bought some cabbages from home... After our walk around the gardens, we headed over to Haddon Hall, a Tudor mansion & the setting for the recently released film, "Jane Eyre". Parts of the house date to the 12th century. Again, the TWELFTH century! I just can't get my head around it. In the Chapel is a Norman font. There are stained glass windows dated 1580 & carved portraits of Edward 4th & his wife, Elizabeth alongside 16th century Flemish tapestries. Brrrrr..... W.O.W. To be able to SEE & experience the things that make history is really blowing my mind. The fact that I am a bit jet-lagged is making this beer extra ... extra... zzzzzzz...... As for the Falkirk Wheel - you ain't LIVED until you've experienced the Manchester Wheel!!