A walk with Meliesha

May 4 2019 – Somewhere near Ambleside, Lake District.

I have come up to Yorkshire to attend a one day photo walk on the bank holiday Monday. After I booked the trip my daughter took a work-away job at a small yoga retreat near Ambleside in the Lake District. I have never been to the Lakes and it has been on my to-do list for ages. This seemed like a perfect opportunity to take an extra day off work, come up to Yorkshire early and drive the extra 60 miles to where Meliesha is staying. Luckily she took the day off work!

The drive from Settle to Ambleside was mostly traffic free, and pretty good, until I arrived on the outskirts of town where I got stuck in a massive queue of barely moving cars, this is the Saturday morning of a bank holiday weekend. I was expecting this; at least the scenery is great, even the town is attractive enough.

I arrived at Meliesha’s work place just after 10:00, she is living on a small farmlet, apart from being a family home it is also a yoga retreat. She has been cooking and teaching yoga. Meliesha teaches yoga in a yurt.

After meeting the family who own the retreat and having a look around the property we set off to Coniston, on the edge of a small lake, Coniston Water. We stopped for coffee and a snack in the town, before starting out on a walk down to, and along side the lake.

The Lake District is one England’s premier tourist locations, an area of outstanding natural beauty and I can see why it is so popular, it is a beautiful area, and good weather made it even better.

Coniston is a much smaller body of water than nearby Lake Windemere, though it is equally nice to walk along, quite peaceful and relaxing on this spring bank holiday weekend. Maybe the crowds I saw in Ambleside had yet to make it this much further.

There was some really nice small sections of forest along the shoreline, old forest by the amount  of blue bells we saw. What I liked most about these small treed sections was the moss and ferns. We have a lot of ferns in Epping Forest, but not much of that deep green old moss, and no old moss growing and living on even older stone walls. Almost tempted to move up here!

On the way back to where Meliesha is staying we passed a sign pointing to Wray Castle, not being one to pass a castle by I turned down the side road and we went for a quick look. The castle is not particularly old, being built as a revival castle about 180 years ago by a wealthy family from Liverpool, it is pretty cool though.

We took a walk down to Lake Windemere from the castle, like the path along Coniston we had lake on one side and trees on the other. Like Coniston it is a lovely, light, cool and airy walk.

There were also a heck of lot of bluebell patches. I have never seen so many before.

Though I was there for less than a day, and saw only a tiny section of the area, not venturing into the hills at all, I really enjoyed my time. I am very much looking forward to coming here again for a proper holiday.

I dropped Meliesha back at her work early in the evening and then drove the hour or so back to Settle and my B and B. It was great seeing Meliesha somewhere different again, apart from when she comes to stay with us in London, I don’t think we have spent time together in the same place for years.

Arriving back in the car park in Settle, I was lugging all my stuff from the car to my room. Bending over to get my room key from my trouser pocket my big camera, the Canon 5d Mk1, fell out of the top of my bag, smashing on to the tar seal. The 50mm lens broke into a number of pieces, probably saving the camera body. The lens is a cheap plastic one, the ‘nifty fifty’, a most beloved lens, but fortunately easily replaceable. What is proving more difficult is getting the battery door fixed, it was the only damage the camera sustained, but it is so old they do not make parts for it any more. A choice has to be made. How do I replace the camera?

Monday I do the photo walk, and not I do not have my main, and, by a long way, best camera. Doh!