Sailing, Taking Bath, Wales

27 May

It has been another busy and interesting week and after giving an overview I will let the photos tell the story.

On Monday morning I was up at 05h00 with a cunning plan to get some photos while the water was still calm incorporating some nice reflections.  It was not to be – the breeze was already up and I returned home an hour later with only 6 photos, none of which were very good.

We had another early start on Tuesday this time to catch the ferry to the Isle of Wight [IOW] for the day.  We were booked to cross at 07h45 but we arrived in the nick of time to be pushed on to the 06h45 sailing.  This meant that even by the time we got to Carisbrooke Castle it was too early.  We ended up at Osborne House, one of the main things we wanted to see, just before opening time at 10am.   It was magnificent, no photos inside without a letter from the Queen.  The interior was intricate and everything was practically perfect.  Spent ages in the grounds as well and walked down to the beach.   Finally left there at 13h00 after eating our sandwiches and headed for East Cowes.  Arrived just in time to drive straight on to the chain ferry for the £2 trip to the other side. Parked the car near the centre of Cowes and walked it for a while.  Time was going by so we next headed directly to The Needles arriving at 14h30 after a 40 minute drive.  It was a 1500m walk from the car park to the Old Battery.  Good views and an interesting site.   They had a replica ship spotting sight that you could use and it would give a map location of the sighted object all mechanically.  By the time we came out to go to the Rocket Lab up the top of the hill the sign said it was closed.  We went up there smartly and the lady looking after it let us in – it was two minutes before its 16h00 closing time (last entries at the places are typically 30 minutes before closing).  We spent a quick ten minutes looking at the displays then walked down to the test area.  There was another good lookout point there with views side on to The Needles.  When we got back to the car we drove to Freshwater Bay to look at the Thatched Church before heading back to Yarmouth.  Although the weather had been grey and cool it didn’t rain all day and we had a very full schedule of sightseeing.  Got home and met Marc and Lesley at the Ship Inn for a drink and just outside on the quay there was a group of Morris Dancers.  A great day.

Wednesday started as a quiet day spent around the house and in Lymington.  We did the housework in preparation for leaving tomorrow.  Then we got in touch with Marc and he was keen to go for a sail so it was all on.  He had all the gear and he rolled the dingy down from his shed to the slipway so he could row the 50m to where Sailfish was moored.  Marc’s sailing skills are impressive.  He collected us from the pier and negotiated the narrow lanes, other boats and the ferry, with an unfavourable wind direction and variable strength, all under sail.  No motor used.  Nice!  Sailfish has a vintage Seagull motor, Kingfisher model I think.  We used it on the way back to the mooring and it runs like a clock.  It was a great experience to have and we are very grateful to Marc for making it possible.

We left Lymington at 10h00 on Thursday and head up through the New Forest and via Ringwood to Stonehenge again.   Got to Stonehenge and it was arctic cold, blowing and spotting rain.  Next stop was Bath where we spent a couple of hours wandering.  The Georgian architecture is beautiful, not just in its own right but because it is so consistent throughout the town.

We finally arrived at our house sitting assignment in Wales at 17h30 and were met by a very busy Lisa!  She had a guy measuring up for a new bathroom, contractors finishing installation of gutters on the barn and preparation for her trip all going on at once and in addition to the normal demands of dogs, cats and geese.  We slotted in quietly and got to know the residents as well as the workings of the place in time for Lisa’s departure at 09h00 on Friday morning.

Friday started out cold but by the evening it was arctic.  We were all dressed up and had the fire going.  Thankfully it is a good fire box and we were able to keep the living area comfortable.

Saturday was a lot warmer and we stayed here most of the day doing exciting things like cleaning the goose box.  We also went to the supermarket in Brecon to stock up on food for the bank holiday weekend.

Sunday was a cracker of a day as you will see in one of the photos in particular.  We spent a good part of it outdoors, walking with the dogs and we met one of the locals who called in while walking her dog to see how the goslings were getting on.  This lady told us how to get up on to the common where we would get a fabulous view of the sunset and the entire district.  So we left the house at 20h15 and drove along some of the narrowest lanes we have seen yet and ended up on the top of the common as described.  There was a strong breeze and it was absolutely freezing even though we had on all our warmest clothing except thermal underwear.  I got a few photos but nothing stunning – there was very little cloud for the light to play on.

So that is the week in words, now here are the photos…

Boats along the Lymington River at 06h51 on the ferry to Isle of Wight.

Boats along the Lymington River at 06h51 on the ferry to Isle of Wight.

More boats.

More boats.

The approach to Yarmouth.  The George Hotel directly ahead and Yarmouth Castle just to the right of it.

The approach to Yarmouth. The George Hotel directly ahead and Yarmouth Castle just to the right of it.

Winkle Street is a cute strip of stone and thatched cottages beside a stream in a small village in the middle of nowhere.

Winkle Street is a cute strip of stone and thatched cottages beside a stream in a small village in the middle of nowhere.

Carisbrooke Castle, on the outskirts of Newport, didn't open till 10h00 so this was as close as we got.

Carisbrooke Castle, on the outskirts of Newport, didn’t open till 10h00 so this was as close as we got.

Anti Climb Paint, yeah right!

Anti Climb Paint, yeah right!

I can still remember when it was called barbed wire.

I can still remember when it was called barbed wire.

Osborne House, the summer residence of Victoria and Albert.  Spring flowers looking good too.

Osborne House, the summer residence of Victoria and Albert. Spring flowers looking good too.

Looking down the avenue towards to beach access.

Looking down the avenue towards to beach access.

And looking back the other way.

And looking back the other way.

We did stop in at Cowes but it was a dreary sort of a day and there was not much going on.

We did stop in at Cowes but it was a dreary sort of a day and there was not much going on.

I have my suspicions that it might quite often be windy here.

I have my suspicions that it might quite often be windy here.

The Needles at the western tip of IOW.

The Needles at the western tip of IOW.

I thought they were quite photogenic!

I thought they were quite photogenic!

Back in the corner where the red and white meet is where the car park was situated, about 1.2km from the Old Battery and observation point.

Back in the corner where the red and white meet is where the car park was situated, about 1.2km from the Old Battery and observation point.

The Needles again with a glimpse of the Old Battery buildings.

The Needles again with a glimpse of the Old Battery buildings.

The thin chalky line towards the bottom left of this photo is the top of the track we walked up - no barriers and only a short grassy slope before the vertical drop of ~200ft to the rocky coastline.

The thin chalky line towards the bottom left of this photo is the top of the track we walked up – no barriers and only a short grassy slope before the vertical drop of ~200ft to the rocky coastline.

The Thatched Church, only built in 1905 but on land donated by the family of Lord Tennyson and using stone from the farm cottage where Sir Robert Hooke grew up (you know the guy, Hooke's Law F=k*x).

The Thatched Church, only built in 1905 but on land donated by the family of Lord Tennyson and using stone from the farm cottage where Sir Robert Hooke grew up (you know the guy, Hooke’s Law F=k*x).

Yarmouth Pier is the only remaining working wooden pier in the British Isles, so the story goes.  We meet some guys who were just setting up for some fishing (it was 18h00) and they were planning to be there all night.  It was already too cold for me.

Yarmouth Pier is the only remaining working wooden pier in the British Isles, so the story goes. We meet some guys who were just setting up for some fishing (it was 18h00) and they were planning to be there all night. It was already too cold for me.

A nice pub for a beer and some food before catching the ferry back to Lymington.

A nice pub for a beer and some food before catching the ferry back to Lymington.

After the 2012 Olympics a post box in the town of each gold medal winner was painted gold.  Ben Ainsley lives in the house in the background but getting this one painted involved a pillar of the local community being handcuffed and spending a night in a police cell.  It is a sad legend of bureaucratic stupidity of the highest order by the Police and the Post Office.

After the 2012 Olympics a post box in the town of each gold medal winner was painted gold. Ben Ainsley lives in the house in the background but getting this one painted involved a pillar of the local community being handcuffed and spending a night in a police cell. It is a sad legend of bureaucratic stupidity of the highest order by the Police and the Post Office.

This is our captain, Marc, who took us for a leisurely sail down the Lymington River to the Solent half way to Hurst Castle.

This is our captain, Marc, who took us for a leisurely sail down the Lymington River to the Solent half way to Hurst Castle.

This is one of Marc's own photos and he introduces his boat… "This is Sailfish, our old Sandpiper, designed and built locally 1930. She is moored by the Ship Inn on the Quay; 4 minutes and we are sailing down the river and 4 minutes on our return and there's a pint waiting for us!!"

This is one of Marc’s own photos and he introduces his boat… “This is Sailfish, our old Sandpiper, designed and built locally 1930. She is moored by the Ship Inn on the Quay; 4 minutes and we are sailing down the river and 4 minutes on our return and there’s a pint waiting for us!!”

Leanne enjoyed being in command for most of the epic voyage.

Leanne enjoyed being in command for most of the epic voyage.

The Solent was busy with different classes of club competition in full swing and IOW ferries still running.

The Solent was busy with different classes of club competition in full swing and IOW ferries still running.

Marc taking Sailfish to her mooring opposite the Ship Inn.

Marc taking Sailfish to her mooring opposite the Ship Inn.

This is the same field as the sunset shot last week on a different day with different weather. All the rapeseed fields seemed to glow under the grey sky.

This is the same field as the sunset shot last week on a different day with different weather. All the rapeseed fields seemed to glow under the grey sky.

We got back to Stonehenge en route to Wales and managed to make it in opening hours so we could walk a little closer this time.

We got back to Stonehenge en route to Wales and managed to make it in opening hours so we could walk a little closer this time.

Coming down the steep hill into Bath we were struck by the rows of houses.  The photo does not do it justice.

Coming down the steep hill into Bath we were struck by the rows of houses. The photo does not do it justice.

The Royal Crescent in Bath.  I used the wisteria to hide all the parked cars and big white vans on the road.

The Royal Crescent in Bath. I used the wisteria to hide all the parked cars and big white vans on the road.

Pulteney Bridge crosses the River Avon in Bath, England. It was completed by 1774, and connected the city with the newly built Georgian town of Bathwick. Designed by Robert Adam in a Palladian style, it is one of only four bridges in the world with shops across its full span on both sides. It has been designated as a Grade I listed building.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pulteney_Bridge

Pulteney Bridge crosses the River Avon in Bath, England. It was completed by 1774, and connected the city with the newly built Georgian town of Bathwick. Designed by Robert Adam in a Palladian style, it is one of only four bridges in the world with shops across its full span on both sides. It has been designated as a Grade I listed building. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pulteney_Bridge

We are now looking after Lisa's place while she is away touring for two weeks.

We are now looking after Lisa’s place while she is away touring for two weeks.

The Astonish car cleaner was not working very well so Leanne went out and showed it what to do.  Maybe next time it will be OK.

The Astonish car cleaner was not working very well so Leanne went out and showed it what to do. Maybe next time it will be OK.

This is the adult pair of Brecon Buff geese.  They are quite placid and easy to handle.

This is the adult pair of Brecon Buff geese. They are quite placid and easy to handle.

These are the 5 goslings from the first clutch.  They are about five weeks old in this photo.

These are the 5 goslings from the first clutch. They are about five weeks old in this photo.

These lambs were taking a little too much interest in the geese so soon after this shot the gander gave them a lesson in what is a polite distance to keep.

These lambs were taking a little too much interest in the geese so soon after this shot the gander gave them a lesson in what is a polite distance to keep.

One of the two laying hens basking in the sunshine.

One of the two laying hens basking in the sunshine.

The garden is looking great.  The spring flowers are a little bit later here and many of the trees are only just breaking into leaf.

The garden is looking great. The spring flowers are a little bit later here and many of the trees are only just breaking into leaf.

The late afternoon view from 'Banc y Celyn' common with the Brecon Beacons in the background.

The late afternoon view from ‘Banc y Celyn’ common with the Brecon Beacons in the background.

Sunset from 'Banc y Celyn' common - 40 seconds before the published time for this location.

Sunset from ‘Banc y Celyn’ common – 40 seconds before the published time for this location.

2 Responses to “Sailing, Taking Bath, Wales”

  1. Jeff June 2, 2013 at 15:32 #

    Hi brian and leanne, I remember cycling around the Isle of Wight back in 1980. I think it took me two days but that could have been due to the number of pub stops. I seem to recall pubs were everywhere..just finishing off a nice Queens birthday weekend in Hahei

  2. Lesley-Ann May 28, 2013 at 18:18 #

    We loved the photos especially Captain Marc surveying the scene!
    Loved meeting you it gave us some ideas for our own Mid Life Crisis!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: