Monday 19 February 2007

First Trip to Wales

Friday afternoon, Stephen and I both took off early to catch the train to Wales out of Paddington. The trip went smoothly - so smooth in fact that we ended up arriving an hour early! Almost unheard of on public transport; and possibly a first ever for British Rail. The others coming by train arrived in dribs and drabs and before we knew it, Luke had arrived to take us all up to the Big House. By this time it was dark, so no pictures, but the next day was to prove a wonderful day out - and a proper look at our surroundings.

Country House
the house itself with a few of the outlying buildings - almost like a castle! And the grass is still green - in February!

Country House 2
a view of the front of the house itself

front lawn
a view from the front door - I love the look of the tree. There's a little river just over the rise in the background

River Wye
speaking of the little river

river pebbles
with a nice, pebbly bottom.

Stephen and Lief
Stephen and Leif debating the flora

little yellow flower
that was covered in little yellow flowers

old man river
looking over the edge of a little bridge at a stream feeding into the river

moss and wire
an artsy inclination

little bridge on the Wye
the little bridge and stream itself!

River Wye 2
flowing into the river

boys walking
boys walking over the bridge and into the woods

mossy tree
a fabulous mossy tree

and another little rivulet. No wonder it's so green here!

and heading back to the house

Later on that afternoon, another group of us headed off to watch Welsh Red Kites at a nearby feeding station. We all hid in blinds so that the birds would feel less threatened and settled down to watch the show. We were prepared for there to be fewer birds and perhaps less activity since it was winter, but we weren't disappointed. The birds were incredible.

kites 1
a kite (left) coming in behind a flock of crows

kites 2
circling. . .

kites 3
getting closer. . .

kites 8
and so it begins

kites 7

kites 9

kites 10
we weren't the only ones watching the show

All in all it lasted just over two hours, and it was quite fantastic. I highly reccomend it for anyone who finds themselves in Wales.

From there it was back to the Big House for Sally's birthday party followed by a lazy Sunday and the train back to London. Not a whole lot to report, but a really wonderful taste of Wales - we'll definitely be going back!!