The bus arrived to pick us up about 10:50 and took us into the village of Grasmere for our tour of Dove Cottage where the young Wordsworth lived with his family for about 8 years
. It is here that he wrote most of his most famous poetry. We had to go in small groups as the rooms in the cottage were very small. We saw the downstairs 3 rooms, upstairs 3 rooms and small sleeping room. It was here that he lived with his wife, 3 children, sister, sister-in-law and two other poets: Samuel Taylor Coleridge and Thomas de Quincy . Sir Walter Scott visited and gave the children a beloved dog, Pepper whose portrait hangs in the house. We learned that his wife, Mary, and his sister, Dorothy acted as secretary to him. He would dictate and they would write. Dorothy was quite a writer herself, keeping a journal that details their life at Dove Cottage. We also visited the garden where he spent a lot of time getting inspired from nature. We also had a short visit to the Museum dedicated to the Lake Poets: Wordsworth, Coleridge and Southey. In the gift shop I bought a tea towel with "I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud" on it surrounded by daffodils. This is my favorite poem by Wordsworth and the daffodil has long been my favorite flower.
Next we drove down to Bowness where we had lunch. Larry and I walked to The Albert Pub but the wait for food was an hour due to a huge party going on. So we walked further up the street to Monte's Cafe where we had Cream Tea for Two. This consisted of a pot of tea each, a scone with clotted cream, strawberry jam, and sliced strawberries
. It was just the right amount for lunch and delicious. Then we walked back down to the harbor to get in line for our cruise on Windemere. We sat with Carolyn and Mike on the railing at the back of the Teal. We cruised south on Windemere and the views were great of the surrounding countryside and the sailboats on the lake. When we got to the other end at Lakeside we got off the boat and onto the Lakeside and Haverthwaite steam train for a short journey, 4 miles. We had reserved coaches like the ones Harry Potter and friends rode to Hogwarts. When we arrived Haverthwaite, Davey was waiting for us with the bus.
Our last stop of the day was the Lakeland Motor Museum which had a display of old cars, motorcycles, bicycles, scooters, tricycles and toy vehicles. It was a lot more interesting than I thought it would be. The men in the group really loved it. During this visit it started to rain enough that we had to use "brollies" and "water proofs" - umbrellas and raincoats. We got back to the hotel at 5:00 with supper not until 7:00 so I started writing this blog and downloading pictures.
We sat with Charlie and Karen, Donna and Jeff, another couple and Jane and Debbie. Our reservations were put at a table for us again. Larry got a beer at the bar again, this time it was JW Lees Bitter. Larry and I both had the salmon starter which was raw but very good. Larry had fish and chips and I had roast lamb, both excellent. For dessert Larry had iced coffee parfait and I had coconut and raspberry panna cotta. After supper we went for a walk and ran into Mark, Debbie and Jane. We talked for a while and then Mark went in. It was spitting rain but the four of us went for a short walk anyway. When we got back Debbie and Jane showed us their room which was on the basement level across from the kitchen and next to the car park. The door opened to the outside and it was all by itself. Then they came up to see our big room. We skyped with Erin and Derek and I finished the blog.
We got up at 7:20 today, with breakfast at 8:00, leaving at 9:00. Our first activity was a choice between a hike to Lake Grasmere or a walk in the village of Grasmere where Wordsworth is buried. We chose the hike with Ron. We walked along the White Moss Walk to Penny Rock Wood in the Lake District National Park. We walked along the River Rothay which means red river. We went through a gate to a sheep pasture and through another gate into Penny Rock Wood up the hill and down the hill and over the footbridge to the southern end of Grasmere which means lake (mere) of the grasses as there is grass growing along its banks. We enjoyed the views and took pictures then headed back to catch the bus. On the way back Ron had us pick some rushes and told us how the locals would dry them, soak them in the fat of sheep and then use them like a candle for light. They would attach them horizontally and they could light one or both ends - hence the saying "burning the candle at both end."