Sunday, 5 March 2017

February...blinked and missed it!

I don't know whether to be glad we are rapidly heading out of winter or slightly freaked that the months race past so fast. Seems to me the older you get the more rapid the passing of time! But on the whole, I'd go with the former emotion - whilst I love crisp, bright winter days I do struggle with the sense of hibernation that pervades with days and nights that, when you work full time and long hours, seem barely discernible. So, I'm not sorry February is out of the way and the evenings are brightening. I feel as though it passed without anything much to enjoy or appreciate but looking back through the few photos I took I realise that's not entirely true.

I was lucky enough to be given National Trust membership by kind friends last year and unknown to me, they renewed it for me again this year. So at the end of January, on a beautiful cold Sunday I went to Felbrigg Hall, one of my favourite NT houses as a child - I always felt it had the feel of a family home, albeit a very grand one! The house doesn't open to visitors until March but the gardens and park are open so I put by boots on and walked...


It was lovely to see some blue sky...


and the beautiful thing about winter sunshine is the long shadows it throws...


Ok, so this is not your average family home...


but, to me it felt much more 'friendly' than the other grand halls in the area. It was bitterly cold, even in the bright sunshine, with frost on the estate churchyard...


A couple of weeks later, on a bit of a whim, I decided to drive to Bristol to see my youngest son where he is at University of West England. Not such a bright weekend but the city of Bristol, which I hadn't been to before, was a lovely place to spend a couple of days. Sadly, I was not in this rather lovely hotel...!


We walked up to Cabot Tower... 


for the views across the city. I imagine on a brighter day, you must be able to see for miles from here...



Lovely to see patches of snowdrops...


Seems to me Bristol has quite distinct 'neighbourhoods' within the city - on the way to Brunel's famous suspension bridge we took time out in pretty Clifton with its streets of independent shops. Loved this flower shop display on the path...


And the sun kindly came out for us to sit and eat huge scotch eggs and salads from a deli/bakery - so good!


The bridge is an impressive structure spanning the Avon Gorge...


with beautiful skies...




 Bristol seems to have lots to offer and we barely began to explore in a short weekend. The Docks are worth a visit, with the fascinating museum of the recovered Steamship, SS Great Britain. So well done, to be able to walk under the glass water level...



and inside the ship a real sense of the history and the conditions in the reconstructed cabins. Lovely to spend a bit of time with my boy and let him share his 'new' city...


Last look back at the prettily coloured houses overlooking the water...


Even on a fairly dull couple of days, Bristol had a nice feel to it and it was good to see him settled and happy.

And that was it for days out in February! And already almost a week into March! This weekend I have largely hidden at home with a touch of the viral lurgy that seems to be prevailing but last week it was lovely to feel a bit of warmth in the air in Regent's Park, London...


and to realise that at 5.30pm the sun was only just beginning to set over the River Wensum in Norwich...


And yes, my prevailing feeling is roll on Spring and warmer, longer days...

S x