Saturday 22 March

The temperature has dropped considerably today but the sun is still shining.   Max and I had  an abortive trip to the village shop at 8am  for the morning papers while Storm cooked breakfast.  The shop didn’t open for another half hour.   However, it was comforting to see that the locals  could collect their pre-ordered newspaper with their name written on from the pile stacked up outside the  shop.   Also all the potted plants had been left out overnight so there was no fear apparently that anyone would filch these!

After a very tasty breakfast of sausage and bacon,  from the local farm shop, we went back for the papers and dropped these back to the boat for Storm to read while Max and I continued our walk.  I strolled along the towpath listening to the birds and watching the buzzards soar, while Max scurried back and forth sniffing all the interesting smells in the hedge bottom.

Our friends arrived in time for lunch and in the afternoon we travelled in their car to Charlecote Manor, a National Trust property just east of Stratford.  We chose to walk through the deer park and soon  wished we’d paid to view the house itself as the wind got up and the dark clouds gathered and the temperature fell even lower.  A cup of tea in the orangery summoned.  This sheltered us from the hailstone shower and once this had cleared we stepped outside again by which time it seemed like a different day as the sun was shining and it was several degrees warmer too.

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After a very pleasant afternoon we waved goodbye to our friends and paid a quick visit to the ‘Mary Arden Inn’ before returning to the boat for the evening.

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