We had some breakfast at the Hotel before setting off on another day of exploration. We had discussed a rough plan of attack and Andrew had it pretty sorted so he was our navigator once again. We travelled North to Barnsley and discovered that there was a village festival happening but it was going to cost £8 each to get in so we gave this a miss and continued on to Bibury. It was time for a coffee so when we spotted 'The Catherine Wheel' pub as we were coming into Bibury, we decided to call in. It has been around since the 15thCentury and is the only pub in the village so we were pleased we stopped here. A real classic traditional English pub and it is so incredible to think how long it has been there! We walked down into the township where the River Coln runs through with a trout farm and gorgeous stone buildings that the Cotwolds are famous for. We all loved this village!
From here we moved on to Burford where we found ourselves stuck in a traffic jam because there was some kind of parade going on. Once this cleared we hunted for a park which proved to be very difficult but just as we nearly gave up we spotted one so it was meant to be! We wandered up the main street and popped into some neat little shops along the way. I bought a gorgeous traditional Russian Doll (Matryoshka) that has been finely hand-made by master craftsmen, then painted by artists, giving it a unique life of its own. I also came across an amazing needlecraft shop where I could have spent hours looking! I found a neat embroidery which is a silhouette of a couple dancing so couldn't resist purchasing this for my next project. The boys were getting bored of shops by now so we hit the road again- next stop Stow-on-the-Wold!
Andrew and I had been to Stow-on-the-Wold with Mum and John but we didn't mind visiting again and since the weather was brighter we saw this village in a different light. For lunch we went to the same pub and sat at the same table as we did with Mum and John which was quite funny! It was another pub called 'The Kings Arms'- They seem to have one of these in most of the villages but they don't appear to be a chain. At least we knew we could trust it would be good and it had a lovely cosy atmosphere!
When we were in the car before we arrived in Stow-on-the-Wold Anne and I had been talking about old Poems and 'Daffodils' by William Wordsworth came up. I actually studied this in English at school and Anne had memories of her Father reading this poem to her as a child. We couldn't remember all the words though and it was so ironic because Anne picked up a book in one of the gift shops with the title 'I wandered Lonely as a Cloud… and other poems you half-remember from school'. What are the chances! So Anne purchased this and we now had the words…
I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o'er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.
Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the milky way,
They stretched in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.
The waves beside them danced; but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:
A poet could not but be gay,
In such a jocund company:
I gazed--and gazed--but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought:
For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.
The picturesque bright yellow fields of rapeseed flowers that we saw as we drove through the countryside made me think of the daffodils in this poem!
Anyway from Stow-on-the-Wold we headed to Bourton-on-the-Water passing through little places along the way. There is a model village here which we visited and thoroughly enjoyed! It was really cool to recognise some of the buildings in the 'real' village afterwards and cross some of the same bridges we had in the model village. A really fabulous experience and what a stunning place! It was now getting close to dinner time so we decided to make tracks back closer to the Hotel and find a nice place to eat. We ended up at a pub/hotel dining 'The New Inn' in Lechlade-on-Thames which was basic but nice. We have had such a successful and memorable day visiting some truly special places!