Look out...here we come!

Trip Start May 22, 2009
Trip End Feb 16, 2010

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Flag of United Kingdom  , England,
Friday, June 19, 2009

Happy Anniversary?  How bad is it when the people you just met remember before either of you do?  Guess things have been a little busy - and tired...This whole trip was panned to surround our 10th year anniversary, so we're well aware that it's our anniversary, but it was funny to hear it out of the mouths of strangers before we'd uttered it to each other. 

Already a happy day of celebration with a few spats of frustration while trying to figure out where we are going to go.  Endless options may not be the best thing...We're now thinking of heading to Ireland, but which way to we take to get there?  Which ferry port?  Where will there be accomodations?  Bike around cities or train through?  Today we'll search for a good map and try to make up our minds.  Assembled the bikes and it looks like there's not too much damage from the flight.  Everything is still with us - including our stove and fuel containers.  What a blessing!  Trying to resign ourselves to the weather:  cold/grey/rain.  It was a hoot watching the weather this morning:  'today, cloudy with a chance of rain.  Tonight, cloudy with a chance of rain.  Tomorrow (for something completely different)  ...'  It was hilarious watching the long range forcast and where there are usually little icons of sun/clouds/rain, there were just little squares of different shades of grey...

Today we're off to Telford to see an Iron Bridge and living museum (Blists Hill).  Yesterday we were driving through parts of Yorkshire and saw an old house called Shibdon House.  Got to visit Jim's smithy:  The Pennine Forge.  Looks like they're doing lots of great work and made Brian itch to hold a hammer again. 

Blist's Hill was a great little park which reminded me a bit of Heritage Park in Calgary with lots of working shops, cool machines, and little back alleys to walk along.  There were houses with courtyards with the most beautiful climbing roses.  I'm amazed at how beautiful all the gardens are.  And the ivy growing on everything!  Makes me think of the Secret Garden wherever I walk...

Later in the evening Jim took us to a little pub that he plays with to meet up with some friends and have a jam session.  There were 3 banjos, 3 fiddles, and accordian, and a mandolin.  A great mix of people just getting together and having some informal fun - not pre-planned entertainment.  Met the 85 year old accordian player who was an ex RAF and had the moustache to prove it.  He asked us about our accents in the nicest way I think we will ever hear on our trip:  "do I detect a twang to which I am not familiar?".  We also got to sample the strangest 'crisps' ever:  Builder's Breakfast with flavours of eggs, beans, and bacon :S  This British food may take some getting used to...
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