...my sister and I boarded the bus from Ripon to Harrogate, where we took the train to Leeds, where we took another train to Manchester Airport, where we got on a plane to Frankfurt, where we took a train to Stuttgart, where we took another train to Ludwigsburg, where we walked to our respective homes, arriving almost precisely at 6.00 pm.
Our journey of about 1.200 km put us through temperatures from maybe 12 Celsius in the morning in Yorkshire to nearly 30 in south Germany, all within 10 hours. Everything went really smoothly, although of course as soon as we were back in Germany, trains were late, running from different platforms than originally announced, and so on. (In England, everything was bang on time - the train in Leeds left to the second it was supposed to leave!)
Now we're back home, will be back to work on Monday, and are glad to have today and the entire weekend to get back to reality.
As always, it was a great Yorkshire holiday. I think I say every year it was the best ever, but this year it may be true, because we had our lovely cottage for 1 1/2 weeks and didn't stay anywhere else, so it really felt like a home away from home.
I've showed you the cottage here last year, but if you compare it with this year's pictures, you will notice a few minor changes, especially in my bedroom:
Two new armchairs and a new bed. Also, the mirror is on a different wall now.
In the front room, there is a new sideboard, and I think the TV was on a different table last year. Everything else is as it was, including the lovely curtains and Laura Ashely rug. Such a nice gesture of the owners to put flowers from their garden on our table! They even gave us fresh flowers after the first week.
This year, we made good use of the garden set aside for our exclusive use. Some mornings, it was warm and sunny enough to have breakfast out there, and sometimes we had lunch or a cup of tea and some cake, took our books out and just relaxed there.
Of course, the bench in front of the cottage was my favourite spot - you can watch people, dogs (and sometimes cats) walk by without being too close to the road yourself, and it is sunny and protected from the wind there. My bedroom window is the open one on the top floor.
We can highly recommend Matchbox Cottage - if you ever are in the Ripon area and look for a good place to stay, you can either book the cottage (sleeps up to four), or a room at the B&B (Box Tree Cottages) next door. They are the same owners, very kind and hospitable, and prices are reasonable. Parking is right behind the house, away from the road; the market square, supermarkets and other shops as well as many places of interest (such as Ripon Cathedral) are within walking distance of between 5 and 15 minutes.
This is just the start, of course - brace yourselves for a series of posts on places I've been to and things I've done in Yorkshire!