Winter Barn Owl

Winter Barn Owl
Life's a Hoot !

Sunday, September 29, 2013

A jam packed weekend

Our weather has been absolutely fabulous (sorry Wet Coast, BobScoot), so I took advantage of walking the 3 kms to a motorcycle get together not far from my place.  I have walked past this barn many times, but this time I had a camera in hand so snapped it and the falling down boat houses on the lake.

The 'bikers' had already gathered and the party was in full swing.

We were even joined by 'V-Star Lady' (see blog at right).
We rounded out the day by going to a friend's house (lovely, see below) for dinner.  I thought it would be rude to whip out my camera and start snapping all the delicious food on the table, so I refrained!
 Being a fan of motorcycles as well, they had this wonderful old picture of racer Mike Duff on his Yamaha.
The following day, along with V-Star Lady, we headed east to Prince Edward County, which is wine country.  Given that we were driving and riding, we did not taste any, but did stop for lunch at our favourite restaurant, 'THE INN on the Lake on the Mountain'. 
                              This is the view from the patio.

        The views are breathtaking, so that was our backdrop.

Given that we had to work off our lunch of poutine with short ribs, and greek salad, we headed into Picton.  We parked our Lotus in front of a cute shop and strolled the main drag.
I had to take a picture of this bench, which in it's previous life, was the 'backside' of a truck!

We headed home by ferry and lake view road.  Along the way, a very brave osprey had built her nest on a telephone pole.  It has been there for years, so has withstood the wind and winter weather.  Another one of mother nature's wonders.


Saturday, September 28, 2013

An afternoon off

We have been having gorgeous weather over the past week, so decided to enjoy the sunny and cloudless day by playing hookie from work and heading north in our 1957 MGA to see the fall colours and enjoy a patio lunch.

Our first stop was Westport, a quaint community overlooking Upper Rideau Lake, that has just been named as a UNESCO WORLD HERITAGE SITE.  The Cove Inn has been welcoming guests for over 100 years.

We were lucky to find a free table with a magnificent view and sat back to enjoy a cold one and a yummy lunch.

Heading back south, we stopped in to visit friends who own Bedford Mills, which they lovingly restored.  It served as a working mill during the late 1800's, but was shut down in 1916.  During the 1950's the 'power house' was used as a general store.  It is now used as a workshop, with the mill itself turned into their home.  It has 3 levels that are accessible by a circular iron staircase. 

I was lucky enough to witness a visit from a tame (to them) blue heron.  He lets them approach but is more weary of unknown people.  He did sit still long enough for a 'photo shoot', though.

We rounded the day off with another meal out at our favourite Japanese restaurant, where we tucked into tempura and sashimi.

It was a perfect day and we thoroughly enjoyed all the forks in the road!

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

New Forest, Kingston Lacey and good-bye to England.

Our last full day in England again saw the boys and girls split up.  After a hearty 'full English fry up', we dropped the boys off at Beaulieu, to attend a HUGE car and motorcycle extravaganza while the girls headed off for more culture.
An hour outside of the New Forest sits another one of England's treasures; Kingston Lacey, a magnificent estate complete with manor house and many types of gardens. 


Owned by the Banks family for over 300 years, (now owned by the National Trust) it has an outstanding collection of art, including a Guido Reni fresco, returned to the library ceiling for the first time in a quarter of a century.
                   The drawing room was elegant, yet cozy.
Can you just imagine being invited to a formal dinner and being lavished with a 10 course meal accompanied by music as you ate..

             The 'Spanish Room' had an impressive gilded ceiling.
I would have felt very comfortable if this was my bedroom and bathroom (given how old it was...)

My favourite painting had so many shadows, that the artist gave it a life of its own tricking you into seeing a chiseled statue.
Heading to the very top of the house, the children's bedrooms and play areas were well lit by the elegantly carved dome.

The dishes used in the kitchen were obviously chosen by a cat lover.  Note the bells in the kitchen that alerted the servants where they were needed by the gentry of the home.

   I would have loved to have the key to this wine cellar!
As we strolled the estate, we were taken aback at the beauty of the well manicured lawns and gardens.

Our final evening meal was at the local village pub, The Bell.  The perfect burger!
The following day, we said our final good-byes to my aunt, cousins and Isle of Man travel mates (who ironically live in the same village) and flew a quiet, smooth flight back across the pond.

The fork in this road took me back to my home, furries and friends.

A special thanks to everyone who hosted us, drove us, looked after our animals, checked on the house, looked after my business and did airport chauffeuring.  You know who you are!  THANK YOU.