Last weekend we took a short break up to the Lakes and my hometown, Carlisle. Doesn't it look lovely with all the Christmas lights out? Sadly, I was a bit disillusioned by the way the place turned. Every time I go back it feels like the heart's been ripped out of the place - and just how many pubs and clubs does Carlisle need? There's a particular area of town that's been the major part of the city 'regeneration'...and all they have to show for it is a few hundred yards of bars, bouncers and pools of puke. I'm sure I'm upsetting some folk here, but I do love Carlisle, it's history, it's location and it's small-town feel, but each time I go back there's something else that makes me wonder if the council are out for making a quick pound at the expense of the city. The clincher this time was where once stood a bookshop now stands a KFC! And still no theatre.
Anyways, rant over. We spent much of our time out and about in the countryside. A very close pal, Ann (above in my new knitted hat that didn't fit my big head), moved out of town into the back of beyond last year and it was the first time I'd been to see the new cottage. Loved the isolation and the misty view, and the chickens on the run around the garden....her vegetable patch looked a bit worse for wear at this time of year but G and I were jealous as hell about the fact there was even a garden, let alone livestock and homegrown veggies. we are looking forward to our Christmas hamper of damson gin and chutneys. We're trying to convince Ann and John that what they really need is a couple of angora goats and a constant supply of fibre for IKL.
Yes, that is a real pig's head!
This is a shrew. Cats are lovely, no? Another peril of country living - Ann's cats bring her lots of gifts:
There was something small and kidney shaped not far away from the shrew. There were also some entrails on the sofa. Neither the kidney or the entrails belonged to the shrew. We found all this when we went back to Ann's to lock up the chickens, just before we went for dinner.
We had a great time, it was difficult to come back, but we have so much knitting to do!