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one night in Bladon, and a walk through lovely Lechlade ...

The photo above was taken in the village of Bladon, being our first nights stop on the break away we took over the weekend.

We had a room up top, with some view!

The place where we stayed was not only a guesthouse, but a teashop too. Although we couldn't stay long enough to get to sample a cream tea, the full English breakfast was good ... or get to visit the final burial place of Sir Winston Churchill at the local church, sigh.

We did have other things on our mind, like getting off to the racetrack at Silverstone.

On the other two nights we stayed at the Witney Four Pillars, a very comfortable hotel with a great brasserie, which had a breakfast buffet style and a quality dinner menu.

It's on the edge of the village of Ducklington. Isn't that just the best placename!

On our way home we took a detour slightly off track, stopping at Lechlade.

Would you believe miles away from home, J bumped into someone he knows from fishing at the local Horseshoe Lake. There really is only so much nodding and smiling one can do, so I made a polite excuse and walked on ahead to take some photos.

Arkwright's DIY is quaint, especially with that old bicycle parked outside.

A pretty pastel exterior to the village Florist shop.

A not such pretty exterior to the Gent's Hairdressers. Two words come to mind, Shabby Chic!

Hat's off to the village local!

It wouldn't take much arm-twisting for me to up sticks here!
I so love these old Cotswold stone buildings, traditional to this area of the country.

What a surprise, no queue outside the Post Office, and on a Monday morning too!

Last stop, the Lechlade Antiques Arcade.
I could've quite easily spent hours poking around the units, but with J in tow and him not being remotely interested in bric-a-brac, I was going round like a scalded cat.

I was rather hoping to say hello to Lucy Bloom, as she sells from here.

I didn't find Lucy, but I think I may have found her unit?

Whoever it belonged to, the shelves were packed with lots of bits 'n pieces to look over, and this lovely dark blue jelly mould caught my eye.

I had to have it knowing it would go really nicely alongside my vintage Cornishware ...

and so it does!



photos - motoGP official website

Silverstone weekend ...

We had an amazing time at the weekend at round five of the 2010 Moto GP World Championship, with the Air Asia British Grand Prix returning to Silverstone.

The weekend was a big-5o birthday treat for JC, and for me!

I restricted taking photos, as I wanted to enjoy and lap up every minute.

Anyway, with my camera there really is no point in trying, when the bikes are doing speeds of over 200 mph!

Our team is Ducati Marlboro, and on race day Nicky Hayden and Casey Stoner finished fourth and fifth respectively.

No podium!

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We had designated seats in Woodcote A, on the end of a row.

From here, there's a fantastic view of windy sections of track, the back end of Pits Straight, and the finish.

The rest of the time we were able to rove, so we watched practice and qualifying from other areas of the track.

The weather was mixed, Friday and Saturday was brass monkeys!

For the middle of June it was freezing, with a north-easterly ripping through the grandstand seats. I can't believe how sensible we were in taking spare warm clothes and a fleece!

Fortunately on Sunday it was warm with sunshine, and we could peel off for race day!

There were a few thrills and spills in practice and qualifying.

On race day, Melandri came off into the kitty litter pretty much in front of us. We blinked and missed it, but did get him walking back to the pits.


Valentino Rossi crashed out in the last round at a home race in Mugello, and is out with a shattered leg for who knows how long?

It was great to see so many get well wishes for him on this display board from his adoring fans.

Not me!

The Blades were doing a display on Saturday albeit in a different colour. They are now blue, sponsored by Barclays Bank.

I took the photo above last year at our local Shoreham airshow close to our home, when they were sporting a more striking Ducati Red colour!

It was a shame to miss the parachute display by the Red Devils on Friday, but we did get to see the eardrum-bursting display by the Typhoon Eurofighter on Sunday, which I have to say was as jaw-dropping as ever.

Love it!

Late afternoon we watched live music by groups in the Arena eZone, who were very good.

On Friday evening World Cup was being shown on the big screen. We stood bedraggled in the cold and rain to watch the whole 90 minutes of that very bad match England vs Algeria!

It really isn't worth doing a rewind on the football, but if you want to catch up with highlights from a day at Moto GP click here.

Rule Britannia, and Ducati!



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how to be happy ...

When you're busy in life doing all those things you really don't want to be doing, we sometimes forget to -

take a reality check - cherish friends and family - show affection - be kind often - have a laugh - look after yourself - be grateful - spend time in nature - slow down and learn to relax - forgive.

Words by Maggie Richards - an interesting article if you want to read it.

Photo by me - the light and dark side of a perennial Geranium.



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curious calves and English idioms ...

These snapshots were taken whilst up on the South Downs, over the Bank Holiday weekend. There's more in the following post.

Don't you think these calves look pretty cute together?

When I'm blogging, I invariably find myself going off on a tangent.

In this post I deviated somewhat by looking up meanings of idioms and phrases. I find myself using them all the time.

Here's some cow related ones!

Awkward as a cow on a crutch - very clumsy or off balance.

Work your tail off - you work extremely hard.

All hat, no cattle - when someone talks big, but cannot back it up.

Chew the cud - you think carefully about something.

Until the cows come home - for a very long time.

Calf lick - a weird parting in your fringe where your hair grows in a different direction, usually to one side.

I've got one of those!

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chasing one's tail ...

Of which I have been doing rather a lot of lately, being busy and not very productive.

We decided to make time on Bank Holiday Monday to get out on the bikes, finding ourselves parking up in the village of Southease, near Lewes in East Sussex, which meets up with the South Downs Way.

Somewhat sultry, and what with a steep incline and a blustery wind, I found the going a bit tough, to say the least!

J ended up cycling on ahead, as he needs to build up his fitness for the charity cycle ride he's doing at the end of July.

J's received £197 sponsorship so far for the British Heart Foundation, and J's employers have pledged to double the final total. How fantastic is that!

Talking of tails, it was a treat to be able to get up so close to the animals.

This lamb wasn't lost. Its mum was close by.

Aaah, or should I say Baa!

Back into the fold, with a huge expanse in which to roam, to run free without care or purpose.

Sounds like a good plan to me!