Sunday, October 26, 2008

Tea & Leaves

I adore autumn and especially love October! Halloween goodies in the shops, talk of Christmas, cosy evenings in and let's not forget the food - pumpkin pie, soup, tea and toast (exceptionally more enjoyable on a dark, winter evening), everything is more spicier and rich and full of comfort! Just love, love, love this time of year!

Al and I delighted in taking Coby for a good old kick around in the leaves on Saturday afternoon. We drove about 3 miles south of Hitchin through the picturesque villages of Gosmore, Preston and St Paul's Walden. We took a stroll in Hitch Wood and although we didn't see anything as exciting as free roaming deer, bats, stoat, foxes, mink and hare, these are among the local wildlife in the area. We did find some mushrooms, a huge tree that had been uprooted and many beautiful leaves that we managed to identify with our swatch book from the Woodland Trust. There always seems to be a polite code of ethics when strolling in the woods, cyclists, dog walkers, couples out for a romantic walk, everyone we passed nodded a greeting our way.

After some fresh air, we drove up to Whitehall Farm and Emily's Tea Room. The farm has an eclectic mix of old and new with rusted pieces of machinary and small wooden workshops alongside the restored barn that houses the tea room. The animals on the farm are all very old including a 15 year old owl and a pony called Merlin.

Lunch was carrot and parsnip soup while Coby opted for beans on toast. And how can a cream tea be resisted? We walked it off loitering around the farm and stables and across the field to visit the pigs. A most enjoyable, if a little muddy, afternoon!

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