Andrew Ducker (andrewducker) wrote,
Andrew Ducker

Greetings from the wilds of almost-but-not-quite Wales

We are on Holiday! We left on Friday morning, and following a change in Crewe that had us dashing up and down a bridge in under three minutes (with me carrying both suitcases), arrived safely in Hereford at 4-ish.

We are staying here*, in a very nice cottage, with my parents, both my brothers, and my nephew Noah. Meredith sensibly claimed lack-of-holiday and stayed up in Edinburgh to go dancing and spend a whole week in blissful solitude.

The food has been its usual awesomess**, particular as on Monday we celebrated our wedding anniversary by abandoning everyone else and heading to the Bell at Skenfrith, which is fully deserving of its high ratings. I started with the seared pigeon breast with a beetroot slaw, and then Julie went for a straighforward rib-eye, and I had a braised pork belly that was perfectly crunchy on top and then melted in my mouth. I finished with "textures of strawberry and cream" which consisted of both tiny wild strawberries and normal-sized ones, along with a variety of tiny dollops of whipped cream, ice-cream and white chocolate. Julie had the dark chocolate cremaux, pistachio ice cream and chocolate parfait, which I sampled and adored. Should you find yourself in the area, I recommend it.

Other than that, things have been blissfully quiet. We've played several games each of Agricola and Dominion, played in the garden with the dogs a lot, visited the odd ruined castle and gone for a few walks. From today's one, these pictures:

The first two of which are panoramas of the area, as seen as we wandered around the hilltop of Ysgyryd Fawr. The third was one of many places where there was a two-hundred-year-old wall, collapsed, with trees growing through it. There clearly used to be more farmland atop it, now collapsed back into woodland, and rather beautiful for it.

Now, of course, my legs ache. But in a good way :->

We left Julie behind this morning when we went for the walk. She's on a three week break from her chemo drugs while they switch her to new ones which don't cause her to be exhausted all the time. We've dragged her out on several occasions so far, including to a horse and pony rescue center, and this morning she decided to have a lie in. Which was interrupted by scrabbbling sounds that turned out to be a shrew. The came to an arrangement by which she would go and get a cup of tea, and in exchange it would vacate the premises before she returned. And so nobody got hurt.

*I am, in fact, sittting at the kitchen counter in the third photo, waiting for potatoes to parboil.

**Not for nothing did one ex of Mike's refer to the annual Ducker gathering as MeatFest.

Note: Depending on your layout, browser, etc. those panoramas may be huge,or not. If not, I recommend opening them in a separate tab, they're very wide!

Original post on Dreamwidth - there are comment count unavailable comments there.

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