Monday, September 8, 2014

We Had Ourselves Some Wheels!

We have been playing tourist with a rental car and had a wonderful three days. 

On Friday, we took the car and went to RAF Menwith Hill to take advantage of Mike's retired military commissary and exchange privileges.  We had not been to a commissary since last November and there were some things I wanted that I can't find locally (such as pretzel logs) and some other thing that are cheaper there than locally or available in larger quantities (such as ingredients for laundry detergent and white vinegar for cleaning.)  I also found a large eye of round that we bought and cut up into meat for 8 meals. 

Mike succumbed to the siren song of the deli counter, specifically it seemed that the roast beef, Virginia ham, pastrami, corned beef, roast turkey and Swiss cheese sang the loudest (I later added some provolone for lasagna.)  So, the "protein drawer" of the freezer is now full again.  And Mike is a happy man dreaming of great big meaty sandwiches in his future.

While I was shopping for food, Mike also took some time to go over to the exchange and buy adult spirits to restock the liquor cabinet.  He was really pleased with the prices and i now looking forward to some cozy winter nights and having some "spirits of Christmas and the New Year."

Yep, one happy man.  Why do I think we may not wait 10 months until we go to an RAF base again?

On Saturday we took to the roads and headed deeper into Yorkshire to the towns of Thursk and Askrigg.  We were in "James Herriot Country" and I loved every second of it.  First off, the All Creatures Great and Small book and TV series are long time favorites of mine.  I have read the book and watched the shows more times than I can count and they never fail to entertain me.

Thursk is where the real life vet, Alf Wight, practiced with his partner from 1940 until his death in 1995.  He wrote his books using the pseudonym of James Herriot so as not to run afoul of the Royal Society of Veterinary Surgeons regulations.  The home where he lived and practiced is now a museum so that you can see how things were when James, Sigfried and Tristan were hard at it.

The actual front building facade used in the TV series is actually located in the nearby village of Askrigg where we went next.  The building is still named, as it was during the series, Skeldale House, and it is now a charming bed and breakfast.  After being awed by the beautiful stone buildings, dry stone fences and miles and miles of beautiful countryside views, I am now working on Mike to go back some time, stay at Skeldale House and explore the countryside some more.  Wish me luck.

Yesterday we met with our friends for lunch and hada great time and a good chat.  Then, upon their recomendation, on our way home we drove over to view the beautiful home and estate of the Duke of Devonshire.  The grounds and pastures are decoratively scattered with unfenced sheep and cows and the traditional manor house is HUGE and very, very awe inspiring.

As an aside, JFK's sister Kathleen married the heir to the then Duke of Devonshire.  If her husband had not been killed in WWII she would have become the Duchess of Devonshire when her husband inherited the title.  But, it was not to be.

I loved our three days of playing tourist.  What a beautiful and historic country.  And the food and drink bargains didn't hurt either. :-)

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