On arriving Saturday we checked into the hotel and caught up with Mother. The house commands a dominating position above Hawes, one that the family owners have turned into a beautiful and unique hotel with simple yet atmospheric gardens. By the time we arrived in the afternoon the weather had turned dark, cold, freezing rain. It was 3 degrees C when we left and not far from the hotel had reached minus 1. Snow was forecast.
We headed out for a walk in windy, wet, freezing conditions. We needed to get out of the hotel otherwise cabin fever would have set in, or Mother would have set us off. And Ted can only stand for sold long being grappled with the accompanying sent of Estee Lauder Youth Drew. So off we set with Ted, who wanted to turn back due to the weather, but mostly due to the sound of shotguns in the valley. It was a pleasant walk but cold as we headed to Hardraw, just down the road passing from field to field. By now water droplets were freezing in the wind. Ted’s coat by this point as had clothing become quite wet. We made it to Hardraw’s Green Dragon Inn, took shelter and had a drink whilst drying out clothing on fire guard for the wood burning range, chatting to locals with a sense of fun in the conversation; as usual Ted was the centre piece.
We headed off, despite a local offering us a lift, across the fields with it now dark, the weather deteriorating, Ted struggling on the frozen grass. He had to be picked up about half a mile away from the hotel shivering hard. On making it back safely we dried out by the log fire in the hotel lounge with mother, to then retreat to the room for a rest before changing for dinner. A challenge popped up. We discovered that Chairman Ted of Found Us fame was not able to make dinner in the restaurant, no dogs. Should I try the “Siberian Hampster” ruse?
We ended up leaving Ted in the suite we had, Ted obliged by shouting the house down. He’s not one to be left out when he’s wearing a Harris Tweed bowtie collar. This was a predicament bearing in mind the two suites above us. A compromise was reached. On eating each course I headed over ice frozen and treacherous pebbles to check on him and feed him lamb across to pheasant. He woofed it down, and eventually settled.
The morning saw a rather “pucker” full English with Mr Woof sadly banished to the suite and checked upon by The Boss. After breakfast we all headed of to Hardraw with a view to seeing the famous Hardraw Force. And we were not disappointed when we got there, with the heavy rain having created a great flow of water over the waterfall. The spray immense and drenching, the noise deafening.
After a right proper dousing aad ignoring the signs saying don't go behind the waterfall we headed to Hawes for the Wensleydale Creamery for cheese buying and shopping.
Shopping involved Claire getting her foot stuck in a boot she tried on with her having to be extricated by myself and the shop owner, the purchase of two sets of ladies’ shoes, one lady’s gillet, a men’s checked winter shirt, and a gift from Mum of a lovely Jacobean replica companion set for the fire, hand made by Belltrees Forge and at the reasonable price of £345 - we went for a sit down brew and cake… It was then off home, sad to say goodbye, but happy in a great weekend.