Sunday, 18 October 2015

Love at first sight

On the wall in our bedroom, amidst a collage of other photos, is a picture of me and Steve.  It's a pretty awful photo, grainy and a little out of focus, but I keep it there because it was taken early on in the evening at a party where we eventually shared our first kiss. (I'll pause there for you to go and get a bucket/ tissue).  Of course I'm still madly in love with the poor man, but there's nothing quite like remembering the night you met, the first time you kissed and the way your heart skipped a beat.  It's a feeling that's difficult to recapture, which is why I keep the photo there to remind me.

I've talked before about my first visit to the Lake District being in August 2010, but that's not entirely accurate as the three rather dreadful photos below prove.  Written on the back of them it says "Geology Field Trip, Shap, Lake District, July 1984"  (Forgive the quality, they were taken on a disc camera - anyone remember them?)

I really can't claim it was love at first sight that time - I do recall it was a day trip (from Walsall) so the visit would have been brief.  I also remember everything being flat and then these huge mountains rising up on the right hand side of the minibus - I'm assuming those were the Howgills - but other than that it didn't leave a lasting impression. Maybe because I had a huge teenage crush on my geology teacher at the time (NOT the one in the photo I hasten to add!) and spent most of the trip staring at him in doe eyed adulation.

I didn't properly fall for Cumbria until August 2010, when the geology teacher was safely out of the way and me and Steve began planning our new life.

Falling in love on/ with Helvellyn
These days, however often I remind myself how lucky we are to live here, we inevitably, to some extent, take our environment more for granted than when we first moved here.  In the same way that I still love Steve but my heart doesn't always skip the same beat it did the night we met.  You appreciate each other but you sort of get used to each other.

Anyway, a couple of weeks ago I was lucky enough to spend both Saturday and Sunday seeing the area through other people's eyes for the first time again and it was fabulous!  On the Saturday I spent time with a group of lovely ladies being guided by Helen Venus (aka Wild Rambling) as they explored Arnside and Silverdale (the previous week she'd had a group getting to grips with Eskdale) and on the Sunday I dragged some lovely friends of ours up Halls Fell Ridge on Blencathra.

Rather than me try to tell you what it was like for them, I'll turn the rest of the blog over to them and let them remind you what it's like the first time you clap eyes on the fells - and maybe your heart will skip a beat again, like mine does whenever I see that old photo of me and Steve.

Arnside Knott - Caroline Blair

This view is from the summit of Arnside Knott. There is a sense of the natural beauty, the eye being drawn to the water channel and to the hills in the distance. A feeling of space and of calm. We sat here for some 15 minutes in sheer silence. The soul at one with the beauty, the mind calm.

Relishing the tranquillity, steeping away from everyday pressures. Pure enjoyment!

Eskdale - Bertie

I couldn't believe that these contrasting  views could be seen on the same day & not a road in sight!  From Midlands a girl (we DO have wonderful countryside here but nothing to compare with this)

Morecambe Bay - Helen Venus

The first time I saw Morecambe Bay from Jack Scout, the sun was shining and it looked like a Mediterranean beach. On closer inspection it was muddy, not sandy but that really sums it up – it’s just not like anywhere else.

Whinn Rigg - Ruth

Breathtaking view of Wastwater. We seemed to be right above it. But to my surprise it was BLUE because of the fabulous weather, not the bottomless black I remember from the past. Won't forget this view in a hurry.

Caz & Ian Stewart - Blencathra

Going up Blencathra with friends was amazing – a totally new perspective from going up and coming down.  Both were stunning in different ways - the danger of going up on all fours and the beauty of walking down through fields and recreating the scene from Gladiator in the meadow.  Very hard to put into words because it just doesn't do it justice, to be honest the pictures don't do it justice either - I encourage everyone to go and you won't regret it.

Halls Fell Ridge


Not Blencathra

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