Wednesday, March 13, 2014: Midweek holiday to the Lake District!

Greetings friends,

I will begin by renewing my empty promise to post pictures. All in due time. I’m just so busy and everything.

Moving on.

On Wednesday morning, Dana, Avi and I set off to Euston Station to make our 10:30train to Penrith. Trains are my favorite mode of transportation so three hours on a train is time well spent. Got sucked into that John Green book pretty quickly. The National provided musical accompaniment to my long thoughtful gazes at the trackside scenery and sheep territory between pages. RUSSIE! SHEEPIES! LAMBIES!

David Oglethorp, director of the Glaramara Outdoor Adventure and Activities Centre, met us at the train station and drove us to the Seatoller House, the bed and breakfast that Lynne Alvarez at the London IFSA-Butler offices arranged for us to stay at. I probably mentioned this a long time ago, but in case I didn’t, or worse yet, you forgot, this trip was coordinated for us because the actual adventure weekend that IFSA organizes took place over Shabbos and Lynne was kind enough to arrange a midweek alternative for us. Outdoorsy fun wasn’t starting until tomorrow, so we had the day to settle in and undwind. After we settled in and ate lunch (let’s hear it for freezer bags!),the three of us took a lovely nature walk/hike in the woods. Love myself a good walk in the woods. It just sets off this euphoria in me, can’t explain it, so I won’t. Many funny pictures were taken, jokes were made, show tunes were sung, solitary meditation time took place. AHH! NATURE!

When we got back from our tiyul (Hebrew: hike) we took a bus (there’s one bus every hour) to Keswick to see what kind of charming city-ish life the Lake District had to offer. Because it was after 5, it had nothing to offer. Everything was closed. INCLUDING THE PENCIL MUSEUM. YES, I WAS IN IN THE TOWN THAT IS HOME TO THE OLDEST PENCIL MANUFACTURER IN THE WORLD AND THE MUSEUM THAT TELLS ITS STORY WAS CLOSED.

I was devastated, as you probably might have guessed.

Chin up, buttercup. (To quote the graffiti in the bathroom on the ground floor of Mandel. Can’t wait to vandalize that stall when I get back!)

After we went into the only two stores that were open (one book store, one antique store) we stopped by the supermarket to pick up waffles (thank you Kings Mill!) and (absurdly overpriced) Ben & Jerry’s/Haagen Daz ice cream for movie night. Dinner was called for 8 o’clock so we did our best to be on time, but in the end it didn’t matter because we Kosher/vegetarian people were exiled to a table in another room because it was too much for the chef to put us at the table with the (six) other guests. Whatever. Better that way. It was just awkwardness waiting to happen.

After dinner, we met the other guests over tea in the lounge/living room. I forgot to mention that this B&B has house-in-New Hampshire charm. The best kind of charm. Love it. Don’t want to leave those kinds of places. Read by the open fire for a little while. Put down The Fault in our Stars when excessive foreshadow served to warn me that this book could ruin my relaxed vacation mode mood and then the three of us cozied up and watched Love Actually with our waffles and ice cream. Ahhh what a great movie. Don’t let Dana convince you otherwise. Suddenly the movie was over and it was late so we turned in for the night.

Read my book for a bit, listened to music, painted, passed out.

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