Wednesday, October 03, 2007

When you don't walk

England's Lakeland is a mercurial place, one minute sunny, the next brooding, the next threatening with wind and lightening. Today the BBC promised rain, and by afternoon, the skies delivered.

Many in our group hiked. Instead, I wandered, then jumped aboard the 100-year-old plus Ullswater Steamers (though now diesel powered) that ply the lake from Glenridding to Howtown to Pooley Bridge and back. Though the lake runs deep and old, it is home to treacherous reefs. Still, the ride is smooth, made easier by the warmth of the staff that serves up coffee and whiskey and local lore, and the locals who ride aboard.

Among the passengers were several dogs, including a pretty border collie who trembled with the wind. Most dogs here are workers as well as pets...but not all. "She's quite nervous,'' explained her mum. "She's even afraid of cows,'' piped in the dad. "She's mostly ornamental.''

Scenes from the day:

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