A few comments before I get started. We have now been here for a year. In some ways, it has flown by (and others not). The part you see on the blog (and actually doing the blog) has been great. I love how we are doing things together as a family as much as we are and getting to experience new and interesting things. The blog itself is good motivation to not only get out of the house in the first place, but to also learn a little background info to share.
As you can see in the title, this weekend (Sunday) is UK Mother's (Mothering) Day. We were in temporary housing this time last year (just off the boat, so to speak) so we punted and celebrated Mother's Day in May. We are going native this year. However, I'm still not used to booking (reserving) a restaurant months in advance for a special occasion so I'll be whipping up something later tonight.
For the weekend, I looked at the weather forecast and it wasn't encouraging. Greater than 50% chance of rain (heavy at times) for Saturday and similar for Sunday. So, I called off any big plans and decided to stick close to home. I apparently haven't figured out the nuances of reading the weather report or they don't know what they are doing (or both) because it turned out nicer than I expected on both days.
So, we ended up at nearby Elvaston Castle, the Derby Cathedral and Derby Silk Mill.
The castle itself is not open to the public (more on that later). The grounds make for a nice day out though. I learned about it in my trusty "Derbyshire Walks with Children" book (walk #13). You can take a quick walk from the parking lot to the castle but we did a big loop just short of 2 miles. There's a nice map here. We were still in the parking lot with Mr. Eagle here.
Manly Man fighting a lion at the end/side of the gate. Looks like the Lion got his nose.
map. These estates often show that many of these folks had more money than sense (or they knew what to do with).
Nice trees. That's really all my Little Man cares about.
home of the blind and/or drunk hedge trimmer
a decent shot of the castle tower from the Formal Gardens
The estate dates back to the 16th century (at least) and was a priory that was sold off by the Crown (remember Henry VIII). The original manor house was built in 1633 but redesigned "in grand style" in the 1800's. In was sold to the county to be used as a park in 1969/1970.
For the last eight years the Derbyshire County Council has been marketing the estate to private companies, claiming that it cannot afford to repair and maintain it but its actions have come to nothing. The latest of these is an attempt to turn the Castle into an hotel and the Park into golf courses. This is being fiercely contested by "The Friends of Elvaston Castle" on behalf of the local community.
We've been spoiled with our travels and this "castle" is rather ho-hum. Oh well, nice walk anyway.
. . . and the "Rockwork" (Rock Arch)
and a mill that's no longer functioning
link) with competitor (PWC) engines. I did some work with Augusta and the Belgian Army on their A109C fleet (and got trips to Milan and Belgium out of it). Just another random event . . .
in like an eagle, out like an owl (and a sleepy one at that)
That was only about 2 hours including the helicopter diversion. The weather was still holding out so we drove the 10-15 minutes back to Derby and decided to see a few local sites.
The first we tried to see was the Derby Gaol (jail). It's only open on Saturday and I expected a visit similar to our one in Nottingham. Hmmm. No one home. I sent a nasty-gram to the office when I got home.
The (only?) famous burial -- our old friend Bess of Hardwick. Remember her involvement in Chatsworth, Hardwick Hall and Bolsover.
quirky (to me) deer of some sort at her feet
Without trying to sound like a tourist snob, we've certainly seen better cathedrals, but we at least at to see the one in our own city.
Cool, let's go learn about that . . . .
engine (mid 1950s).
and a 200-hp V-12 Rolls-Royce Eagle engine (1st RR aero engine)
commemorative RB211 fan blade (for the 1000th engine)
The RB211 was developed for the Lockheed L-1011 and also powers 747 among other vehicles. It was the first true 3-spool engine (a unique RR design philosophy). Not mentioned in the display is the fact that the development cost of the engine forced Rolls-Royce Limited into bankruptcy/nationalization and the split of the auto and aero groups in 1972. (Hmm, wonder why that wasn't mentioned).
This is the forefather to the Trent engines that Kuk and I are working on here on our assignments.
Here you go. Read this and you can probably do my job. (maybe not)
After a long day, it was nice that Nicole was on deck for cooking. We had a return of Sticky Chicken. She also learned a valuable lesson that things down turn out the same every time either! (she didn't like it as well this time for some reason).
And finally, Mother's Day. We did most of the fun stuff on Saturday. However
I at least managed to get some flowers.
for the outside as well. Alex even helped put them in.
One last pic. Our "friendly" house spider(s) have returned. I thought this was an Autumn/Fall thing. Alex had a sighting on Monday and then I found this guy in our bathroom on Wednesday. Go ahead and pull a tab on my manly-man card (if there are any left) but I don't care to see this first thing in the morning (or any time). Either we have 2 (or more) and one is still loose or that guy somehow got from Alex's room, down the hall, through our bedroom, into our bathroom. (Neither are good options, IMO). I still don't know how something that big is getting in and around (we don't have air ducts). Those are 1 inch tiles for some perspective. Oh well. One less spider in the world.
That turned out longer than I expected. Thanks for reading this far and have a good week. Time to make that special dinner.