Tuesday 26 September 2017


Time is flying.  Just three days to go - I can't count Friday as it is travelling day, can I?  It doesn't look wet outside but then it didn't yesterday, not in the dark, but it was!

Today is Chatsworth day.  I really want to see the Style Exhibition and am looking forward to that.  Then, weather permitting, I will saunter around the gardens and enjoy the autumn colours which are becoming more vivid as the week progresses.

Yesterday the rain didn't stop me doing anything.  Firstly it was off to Caudwell's Mill and Craft Centre which involves a short and gorgeous drive through the Chatsworth estate onto Rowsley.

The place looks rather battered and run down, especially without sunshine to brighten things up but there's a lovely (muddy!) walk from the car park.  The woodwork place wasn't very interesting - a few chunks of wood and someone using a power tool!  The gift shop was lovely with some very interesting pieces and I found my souvenir of the holiday.
View from the walk to the Mill

Water diverted under the Mill flowing fast and furious.

The same spot later, gentle and peaceful.

My souvenir - a bowl to keep my keys in when I get home.  I love it!

I wandered round the mill and followed the signs, reading the info as I went.  It's not a flour producing mill any more although parts do work and they get the water flowing through for visitors.  It's all rather oily and metallic/wooden and not the least bit visitor friendly in layout, but I guess that's how it really was.  Health and safety would have a field day with it all and, although there was a 'school room', I shuddered at the thought of bringing 30 children in there!  Having said all that, which sounds too critical, sorry, it was very, very interesting and informative in an adult sort of way and the helpers/staff couldn't have been nicer.

Unfortunately, the one shop I really wanted to look round, the Greenhalgh Glass workshop and gallery remained obstinately closed all the time.  I've fired off an email to them to ask if they will be open but I'm not terribly hopeful.  Never mind.

Then it was off to Haddon Hall which was, as always, lovely!  They had 'A Tudor Feast' showing in one of the rooms which was one of those BBC re-enactment programmes filmed at Haddon Hall with my favourite historian, Ruth Goodman and others.

A few snaps.
Classic view on the way in.

I always think this looks like a face.

A weird old three legged chair.  I'm not quite sure how it can stand, but it does.

A manacle on the wall in the great hall.  It seems that in them there days, you were expected to get pretty inebriated at feasts and, if you didn't, it was seen as seriously disrespectful to your lord and master and also dodgy from the religious point of view given that Jesus' first miracle was changing water into wine at a wedding!  So, if you offended in that way, you were manacled up and the wine/mead/whatever that you didn't drink was poured down your sleeve to hoots of derision from the drunken guests.
That might not sound too bad but, given the lack of washing opportunities, it was more serious than it would be nowadays.
What it didn't say was how long the poor offender was left manacled to the wall.

It was a good visit, really, really good.  The only thing that really put me off was an exhibition of modern 'sculpture' with pieces dotted all about the house, none of which worked with the background, all of which really detracted from the historical context and atmosphere, not to mention getting totally in the way in photos.  It was a shame really but there you go.

This - plonked right in the middle of the long gallery - the only one of many that I actually wanted to photograph but it just didn't fit there.  
No, no, no!

I took a scenic route home but this time it was on purpose as otherwise I'd have hit the school run.  I'm getting to know the roads now and I drove past Thornbridge Hall which was lucky because I want to visit on Thursday and didn't know where it was.  I do now!

I did something daft this morning, because I have a holiday brain, I suppose.  I am making another load, mainly to  try out the fancy flour I bought from the Mill Shop and I added not 200 mls water, but 300!  Idiot!  So I added more flour, etc, and now I have too much dough!  It's OK though because this evening I plan to make and have a curry and, if I pop the excess dough into the fridge, I can make a sort of naan with it this evening instead of cooking rice.  That'll work fine.

Well, the dough is rising beautifully and it's time for a second coffee so I will stop rambling on now.  Have a great day!

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