Sunday, 3 April 2011

Holiday in the Lakes. . .

Life and work has been a bit hectic lately, but I just got back from a lovely holiday in England. I had great spring weather and it was so relaxing to gaze on green grass and daffodils, which were blooming everywhere. I went on a couple of wonderful walks in the Lake District, using Ambleside as a base - just fresh air, good company, breathtakingly beautiful scenery, friendly, inquisitive sheep, Jaffa Cakes at the breaks, and no electronic devices for miles. Utter bliss. First off, a walk in true Wordsworth country up to this point overlooking Grasmere.

The next day I dipped my feet in this very cold water at Angle Tarn where we stopped for lunch.

This is the gorgeous view from the top of Wansfell Pike, overlooking the town of Ambleside. It's so hard to really capture the effect, but from here all you can see are peaks everywhere and Lake Windermere to the left.

On this trip I was also visiting a friend in Liverpool who took me out to Crosby Beach at the north part of the city, which contains a really interesting art installation by artist Antony Gormley. Called Another Place, he created one hundred life-size figures of himself and placed them at various points along several kilometres of the beach. They are all staring out at the water and the effect is quiet and reflective but not intrusive. Very peaceful, though I think it might look completely different, and possibly more fearful, when the tide comes in.

My reading on this trip has been True North: In Praise of England's Better Half by Martin Wainwright - a book debunking the negative stereotypes of Northern England. It's a terrific read - I'm constantly writing down a list of places I need to visit, historical buildings to see, art galleries to go to, and even bands to check out, like The Doves. Technically, I'm a Northern girl myself having been born in Yorkshire, but I came to Canada when I was just nine months old and have lived here ever since, so even though I visit England often, there's so much about the history and culture of my birth country that I'm ignorant of. I never get tired of exploring it though.

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