I'm back home again, half glad (for wintur be around the cornur, m'dears, and 'tis time to chop the wood and light the fire) but half regretful, because I don't intend to embark on another caravan outing again until the spring. Last year I went off to Cornwall in December; this year it's Christmas at home, and family and local friends will be getting my attention, which I hope will be nice. But I'm sure to get restless!
Now that the Cottage is history, and that dreadful and unpredictable drain on my resources has finally gone, I am following a carefully worked out spending and saving regime. This is simple to do while at home, but holidays are another matter. I have to admit that I found it hard to keep to plan. But I didn't do too badly. I cut down a bit on day trips and had no evening meals out. I also applied iron restraint when visiting shopping centres. In fact, I bought just one item of clothing while away, and that was a snood.
Now a snood can be several things for the neck or head, but as presently offered in the shops it's a wide loop of fabric, something like a large scarf joined at the ends. You can probably form a hood with it, but it's most easily worn as a scarf, just slipped over the head and left to hang down your front. If you give it a half-twist and loop it over your head again, it makes for a very cosy chest-warmer. These pictures of me will give you the general idea:
I bought my snood from Debenhams in Taunton, and I think it's just the thing for a chilly afternoon by the seaside - Clevedon in the two lower shots above - although it's so snug and warm that out of the breeze you soon overheat! The top shot was at Tyntesfield, a National Trust property between Clevedon and Bristol, and I can tell you that as I went around the place I had to take off the snood, and then my coat also, and generally loosen my clothing. I would have stripped off down to my bra and panties if it had been possible. It was so warm inside!
I suppose they have to keep the indoor temperature quite high in order to dry the place out after its long decline. It came into Trust ownership only few years ago, and most rooms are still undergoing conservation work of some kind - which adds to the interest of course. There was an NT volunteer in every room, and I found myself chatting to them all. I must have spoken to twenty-odd people at some length, both male and female. All good voice practice, of course, plus I learned a lot about the house and its history.
But later on that afternoon, at Clevedon, it was distinctly cooler, especially as the sun began to set. I'd been there for shots of the famous pier three years before, but I was looking forward to a reprise. The pier is a very popular place to go, and this time it was seething with people. No wonder: the sunset was well up to standard, and very well worth waiting for:
Over on her blog Upside Down In Cloud, Dru Marland shows Clevedon Pier threatened by Godzilla, but there was no sign of that monster when I was there, and 'tis my belief that she made that picture up using Photoshop. But maybe I was just lucky, and would have been eaten on another day.