Ampney Crucis and Ledbury

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September 20th 2014
Published: September 20th 2014
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Hi everyone

We have been in England for a few days now and the weather has been very good. It rained yesterday morning and was beautiful in the afternoon.

We are now in Ledbury, Herefordshire (near where Top Gear’s Richard Hammond lives) with Helen and Gavin for a few days after having spent four delightful days with the Willow family in Ampney Crucis, near Cirencester. Bessie is quite the grown up girl now. We can see the difference in her since we were in the UK last year.

We’ve had a fun time going to the park, going out to lunch and reading her stories. And then there is our shopping trip on Friday! I can’t wait for that.

Floss and Chris have been doing a lot of renovations to their house and it’s looking great. Last weekend it was waterproofing the kitchen floor and putting down sheets of plywood. The next stage is to put down floorboards which will be painted white after the new kitchen goes in. Peter and I were positively exhausted just watching Chris and Floss!

Yesterday we went to Banbury, famous for the English nursery rhyme "Ride a cock horse to Banbury Cross" I’m not sure if it was big in Australia but I remember it from my British childhood years. A "cock horse" seems to be mean a high-spirited horse, or a sending horse to assist pulling a cart or carriage up a hill. From the mid-sixteenth century it also meant a hobby horse. You might also remember, there was a fine lady upon a white horse involved. We spotted her in town!

Banbury Cross stands at the junction of two ancient roads primarily used for the transportation of salt from London. The existing Cross was erected in 1859 to commemorate the marriage of Queen Victoria's eldest daughter to a Prussian prince. The Cross stands a spectacular 15 metres high to the top of its gilt cross and is of Gothic design….

It’s now Saturday and we are back with the Willows. Yesterday was such fun as Floss, Bess and I had a ladies day which included a shopping spree. I must say it’s wonderful being able to spoil your girls! I had the BEST time.

You may recall last year we went hunting for red shoes, well this year we went searching for blue shoes. Luckily blues shoes weren’t as elusive. We got some gorgeous blue converse sneakers and a pair of blue boots which look a bit like cowboy boots. We also came across and HAD to buy a shark suit. It’s not every day you see one of those.

This morning we took Bessie to her ballet class and she was so cute. Unfortunately I wasn’t au fait with the “commenting on how wonderful your own grandchild is” etiquette. Well Bess really was better than everyone else in my completely unbiased opinion. Next time, I will keep my mouth shut (while I am at the actual venue). This morning we went to the jumble sale in the Ampney Crucis hall. It was packed but I managed to procure a pair of black linen pants and a top for the princely sum of 1 pound!

Peter had an unfortunate accident up at Ledbury. He managed to wash his camera. It was extremely clean when it came out of the washing machine! We’ve had it in a container of uncooked rice for 3 days but it’s still very soggy. Luckily we got the photos off the sd card so it’s not a complete loss.

Bye from Ampney Crucis. Next stop Cardiff in search of Torchwood and Captain Jack, Gwen and Rhys.

love pj and Sandy

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