Log in

No account? Create an account
Sauntering Vaguely Downward [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Mad Scientess Jane Expat

Serious Business | Flickr
Bounty Information | Wanted Dead or Alive: Mad Scientess Nanila
Deeds of Derring-Do | Full of Wild Inaccuracies and Exaggerations

The Chateau, Lincolnshire [20140224|17:23]
Mad Scientess Jane Expat
[Tags|, , , , , ]
[the weather today is |knackered]

For the bloke's birthday two weekends ago (How? Where does time go?), we went to a Landmark Trust property in Lincolnshire called The Chateau. We went to another property, St Winifred's Well Cottage, last year - see the "landmark trust" tag to view photos from that visit. I'm reluctant to call this a tradition just yet, but it's a rather appealing one.

The Chateau was built in 1747 by an enterprising chap who could afford to purchase a big plot of land, but not to build a stately home upon it, said land being sadly lacking in such an established building. So instead, he designed a pretty place atop a small hill that, from the road, would look like an imposing edifice when in fact it contains only a single bedroom. A succession of estate owners became increasingly unable to keep it up to its original standards, especially after the grand estate finally was built a couple of miles down the road. It was bequeathed to the Landmark Trust, who opened it to paying guests in 1984.

The Chateau from the front.

We rocked up on Friday night by the light of a full moon, in gale-force winds, armed with plenty of wine and insufficient firewood.

Full moon with clouds.

Humans make fire, stare at fire. Mmm.

Hands-down the best entry in the log book (spanning five volumes over 30 years).

The mirror over the mantlepiece.

Humuhumu toddling around the grounds of the Chateau.

Self-portrait by Humuhumu.

The following day, we trekked to Lincoln city centre to have a look at the stunning cathedral. After viewing it, I was left feeling a bit like Bill Bryson in Notes from a Small Island when he finally visits Durham. How is it that I've lived in this country for nearly a decade, and no one has said to me, "What? You haven't been to Lincoln? It is beautiful and there is good food to be eaten and tiny shops to explore. Run along now, the train is departing. Shoo."

Cathedral spires viewed from the car park.

First glimpse of the cathedral's interior. WOW.

A space this big is toddler heaven.

Back to Mummy (she made this trip quite a number of times).

Stained glass windows.

Oh, you know, just one of the four remaining copies of the original Magna Carta. This is the one that usually lives in Lincoln Castle, which is closed for refurbishment until 2015.

Stained glass in the corridor leading to the cloister.

Taken by Humuhumu, a view of a corner for candlelit prayer.

Hello, lady.

On the way out.

Our appetites sharpened by cathedral exploration (and fighting the winds in the streets), we went in search of pie.

Pie available at the top of Steep Hill.

Waiting patiently for pie.

Back in the chateau, we waited patiently for the sun to swing over the yardarm before opening more wine. Also, the stinky cheeses that the bloke received from me for his birthday. Pictured here are an Oxford Blue and, in the round container, a French cheese called Epoisses which is banned on the Paris metro and with good reason. I preferred the former to the latter.

Wine, shandy, birthday card.

Ready to attack stinky cheese with knives and biscuits.

The next day, someone woke us bright and early on an unexpectedly sunny, calm morning.

Wake up, sleepyheads!

Possibly the cutest picture I have ever taken of Humuhumu (outside the chateau, in front of the view of the power station and the overflowing river) and hence outside the cut.

Running through the snowdrops around the Chateau.

Holding Daddy's hand.

Later in the day, the bloke's sister and family paid us a visit, so we headed out to a nearby pub.

Little Niece inspecting her face in the funny round Chateau mirror downstairs.

Waiting to order.

No no, Humuhumu, the pub is called the Crossed *Keys*.

After a gluttonous meal, we returned to the Chateau to enjoy the sunshine. And pudding.

Little Nephew2 looks out over the river.

Humuhumu found something interesting!

It's an overwintering ladybird on a snowdrop.

Little Niece, Little Nephew2 and Sister-Out-Law collecting snowdrops.

We had to depart at 6 AM the next morning, so this is not a true goodbye shot as it was still pitch-dark when we left. But it's prettier than what I would have taken then.

Goodbye, Chateau.

It's a beautiful house and location, but it lacked the cosiness of St Winifred's and I reluctantly concluded that it didn't delight me as much. I got more out of the previous year's stay in large part because of the sense of abiding love for St Winifred's that's imparted by the log books. The woman who donated the cottage to the Landmark Trust goes back there every year and makes an entry full of memories and old photos, and repeat visitors (most of them are) fill its logbook pages with creativity and outpourings of fondness for it. Something about that, perhaps also because of the wellspring and its religious associations, connected me with the place in a way I didn't get out of The Chateau despite its longer tenure with the LT.

This entry was originally posted at http://nanila.dreamwidth.org/914580.html. The titration count is at comment count unavailable.0 pKa.

From: tyrell
2014-02-24 19:25 (UTC)
Eeeee! Cute photo!
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: nanila
2014-02-27 10:37 (UTC)
:D She looks so pleased to be outside on a hilltop.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
(Deleted comment)
[User Picture]From: nanila
2014-02-27 10:39 (UTC)
It's stunning. So far, so good for the Landmark Trust properties near enough to us to make a weekend away worthwhile, although I think if we had to choose between these two next year, I'd definitely go with St Winifred's.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: cosmiccircus
2014-02-25 03:02 (UTC)
Are most of these Landmark Trust buildings that you can stay in, in pretty good shape now?

Humuhumu seems to be a pretty easy going traveler! And so stinking cute! And on the subject of stinking, what did she think of the cheeses?

Buy anything fun in any of the shops?

Do you guys collect anything fun from all of your journeys? We collect magnets, and have a refrigerator covered with them.
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: nanila
2014-02-27 10:42 (UTC)
Yes, all the LT building are refurbished to a high standard, and they've tried to furnish them in a manner appropriate to the period they were built in.

Humuhumu was not so impressed by the cheese. She wouldn't touch the French one. She had a little taste of the Oxford Blue and that was enough!

We bought some matryoshka dolls as a birthday present for in one of the shops. One was traditional and the other was chicken/chicken/egg/chicken. ;)

I used to collect souvenirs, but because our house is not so big and we don't have much storage space, now I just collect (digital) photos.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: alice_mccoy
2014-02-25 09:20 (UTC)
How lovely. Was the Whisky Shop still at the top of Steep Hill? Lincoln is definitely worth a bimble.

May I point you towards National Trust Gardens at Biddulph Grange around May/ June.. just DON'T read up about them before you go it will spoil the surprise. I think you will like it there.
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: nanila
2014-02-27 10:43 (UTC)
Yes, the Whisky Shop is still there. I didn't dare to enter because I knew that money would evaporate from my wallet if I did.

OK, we'll make a note to go to Biddulph Grange without reading up in advance!
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: mysterysquid
2014-02-25 09:43 (UTC)
What an amazing place. :D
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: nanila
2014-02-27 10:44 (UTC)
It's gorgeous. I imagine it's particularly Turneresque in the summertime. :D
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: dangermouse72
2014-02-25 10:00 (UTC)
Cool photos, especially the ladybird on the snowdrop.

Also, *love* Bill Bryson.
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: nanila
2014-02-27 10:45 (UTC)
Thank you! Yes, I find that certain elements of his expat experience here resonate strongly with me. :)
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: dangermouse72
2014-02-28 07:48 (UTC)
I bet they do :o)

I love the way he writes. I have to admit I'm a bit behind on his recent releases though.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: anthrokeight
2014-02-27 00:02 (UTC)
That is a heck of a cute baby (picture).

Little Niece is not very little any more! I know I've seen photos of her when she was just a li'l sprite. So grown up looking!


(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: nanila
2014-02-27 10:47 (UTC)
Little Niece does look quite grown up, especially with those glasses. I liked the old bottlecaps, but she says they're too small now. Also, she reads at a level 4-5 years above her age, and when she's got her nose in a fat book with her serious face on...!
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: dylsexia
2014-02-27 01:15 (UTC)

Great photos!!!
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: nanila
2014-02-27 10:49 (UTC)
:D Thank you! Glad you enjoyed them. It was a delightful whirlwind weekend.
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: slutbunwalla
2014-03-01 10:01 (UTC)
wow, St. Winifred's was last year already? Sheesh. I remember being oh so jealous of that trip! It looked amazing. This place looks great too! I want to go to there.
(Reply) (Thread)
[User Picture]From: nanila
2014-03-02 20:47 (UTC)
ARGH WHERE DOES THE TIME GO?! If you ever have a chance to wander around England, it's worth staying in places like this and St Winifred's. And reasonably priced in the off-season (e.g. mid-February).
(Reply) (Parent) (Thread)