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The road trip

Last week OH and I hired a rather pathetic looking car (a Fiat 500 which was lacking some what  in acceleration) and went on a mini road trip to stay with friends in York and then over to Cardiff. I should warn you now this post contains a lot of photos but stick with it! I hope you'll like them...

So we drove off up the A1 to avoid those pesky motorways which get you where you want to get to fairly quickly but can be a bit full and OH suggested we stopped off at somewhere called Stamford. Now I had never heard of Stamford but turns out that this is where they filmed Middlemarch amongst other things and it was one of the prettiest towns I've ever visited! But it was a short pit stop before we hit the road north again.
 Our first stop was York to stay with our first set of friends who used to live in London but sold up for a quieter life away from the rat race. They were at work the first day we were there so OH and I went over to the stunning Fountains Abbey which is one of those places on my wish lists.
 Just look at this vaulted ceiling. This was a truly mind blowing space given that it was built at least 600 years ago
I also experimented a lot in black and white. For a few more images check out my Flickr pages. I was very pleased with the results!  
 Now if you're a regular reader you'll know that I love taking pictures of birds, in particular water fowl but as you'll see this partridge wasn't a wader....
 But I did see this peacock butterfly. I used to see loads of these when I lived in the Lake District but I see very few butterflies in London except Cabbage Whites so seeing this was a joy.
 If you know your history all abbeys were dissolved by Henry VIII in 1530s and many people reused the stone hence this stunning hall next to the Abbey. I'm sure it's been used on many a TV period drama but can I name any? Of course not....
One thing that did seem to survive the dissolution was this water mill which was still being used up until the 1930s. The history that building must have seen...  
OH and I also went for a wander through the streets of York, a place we have visited quite a lot in the past three years but I never tire of wandering through the old part of town.  
 Even covered in scaffolding the Minster was looking good
 But I did manage to get a nice shot without any scaffolding.
 The other good thing about visiting our friends in York is that I got to see my new BFF Skylon again. For further cute pics of Sklyon check out my post back in May
 The buskers in York seem to be a cut above the rest. This piano player was doing a mean version of Jackson Five's 'I want you back'
We also came across some birds of prey which we heard whilst walking around the city walls. I thought I was going mad as I could hear a bird of prey somewhere so was delighted to find a small display in a church yard. Random but an added bonus! 
 Our friends then took us to the seaside which is only an hour away from York. Skylon was super excited to have a mess about in the sea. Here is one of my more comedic pictures of her!
 And the sun was shining so lot of brave soles brought out the windbreakers and inflatables to go for a swim. I just loved the colours on this pic. A typical day at the British seaside.
 And even sand castles! Oh and Skylon's owner
 We then marched up a random path up the cliffs to find a lovely costal walk which went past field after field of wheat which was soon to be harvested. Just look at the colours in the fields, magical.
 But we weren't spending the whole of our holidays in York. We jumped into our trusty, but small, car and six hours later arrived in Cardiff. We were staying in the boys playroom and they had just set up this amazing subbeteo set
 Complete with lego crowds. It really was mind blowing! Oh to be seven or nine again....
 So we  only had one full day in Cardiff so we went off to another beach, this time one OH used to go to as a kid as his grandparents used to live close by
 It was a bit more blustery than the beach in York but the sky was huge!
 And very very blue! We were so lucky with the weather. The past few years we've always been rained on but this year no rain, blue skies, seeing good friends, eating and drinking too much but walking a lot and seeing some stunning scenary! But back to the real world and work. Summer is coming to an end and autumn is close by. But was so glad to see the sun and blue skies during our UK holiday. Hope you managed to have a break and see some sun!

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