Coping with cancer. / CYCLING / travel

MAKING THE MOST OF IT…..

“It was the best of times , and the worst of times” ….   that phrase from Charles Dickens, Tale of two cities,  kept coming back to me as we toured through the stunning countryside of the Ribble valley.

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way

Just about sums it up!

Now we have a date for the surgery, 14th May,    it is as if we can make the most of life.   We have eaten out mostly every night, as Michael will be on a low residue diet afterwards   and we took the opportunity of the long Bank holiday weekend to go to the Ribble vally, just 20 miles away.

The weather was kind to us .   There we found a jazz festival at Clitheroe,    some  friends we had not seen for ages,   amazingly a woman I pass daily on my bike, who is now a friend,….. and a bottle for pouring oil.

The Ribble Valley in Lancashire is a well kept secret.   You do not see many tourists there, only local accents.  Yet there are plenty of attractions.  Stunning, unspoilt countryside, pretty villages,  market towns with the river Ribble running through,  like Clitheroe, Skipton and Whalley.    With Castles, old Abbeys and other ancient monuments.   There is a Roman museum at the ancient  village of Ribchester and Stoneyhurst college an imposing  English public school where J R Tolkien started to write Lord of the rings.   Also the whole valley is overshadowed by Pendle Hill, with it’s folklore of witches and history of witch trials.

We had delicious Sunday lunch of roast beef and Yorkshire pudding at the Ribchester arms hotel and stopped off at lots of local cafes for tea and home made cakes and of course had to have some local fish and chips.

On Monday I attempted the Ribble valley villages cycling tour.   29 miles though villages with names like  Mitton, Dinkly, Langho, Downham and my favourite  Grindleton.

http://www.visitribblevalley.co.uk/downloads/file/33/ribble_valley_villages_cycling_route

There were plenty of other cyclists on the route.    Intense young men in Lycra, zooming past me on the uphill climbs,  middle aged couples tootling along like me and old men with no helmets or high vis clothing, who had probably been doing it for years.   All very friendly and helpful. One of the “intense young men” stopped and asked if I needed any help,  as I stopped to investigate a funny noise in my bike   and another couple helped me to  draw my route on a map, when I lost the original instructions.

So here are some of the pictures I took on this wonderful weekend.

Pretty village of Waddington.

Pretty village of Waddington.

Stunning countryside

Stunning countryside

stunning countryside

stunning countryside.  These pictures do not do it justice.

Imposing Stonyhurst College

Imposing Stonyhurst College

Ribchester

Ribchester

Ancient bridge over the River RibbleAncient bridge over the River Ribble

Ribblehead viaduct from Whalley

Ribblehead viaduct from Whalley

2013-05-06 14.51.01

The vaiduct dominates the valley

The vaiduct dominates the valley

The A59 cuts through the valley, keeping traffic off the quiet country road.

The A59 cuts through the valley, keeping traffic off the quiet country road.

As I was taking the pictures over the A59 these friendly cyclists, shouted at me to take thier photo too so here they are!

As I was taking the pictures over the A59 these friendly cyclists, shouted at me to take thier photo too so here they are!


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Pretty houses

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;”>Sometimes I wonder  why I love Paris so much when I have this beautiful place on my doorstep.

 Three years ago after a visit to the lovely  Loire Valley I visited here in late summer and thought “this is much nicer than the Loire!”

Love Denise

and here is what I was doing a year ago

I was at a Hindu wedding!

https://denisefrombolton.com/category/hindu-wedding/

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10 thoughts on “MAKING THE MOST OF IT…..

  1. Beautiful photos Denise, the English countryside at its best! The Ribblehead viaduct is an amazing structure. I don’t know this area at all but we plan to work out public transport and get there this summer if we can.

    Of course you can love Paris as well, it is love of a different kind, a city with beautiful architecture, green spaces, cafes, a different attitude – just a whole other vibe to being in England. It doesn’t mean your love of the English countryside or the north west towns is any less.

    Glad you had such a lovely, happy bank holiday weekend with Michael.

    Love from Janet x

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    • The trip we did in 2010 was by public transport. We used our bus passes from Bolton but you can get the train to Clitheroe from Manchester Victoria. You would have to pay from Bromley cross to Clitheroe which costs £4 75. . There is a local circular bus that goes around the villages and Pendle hill, We also went to Skipton free on the bus using our bus passes.

      This time we went by car but my next plan is to take my bike by train to Clitheroe from my local station and stay overnight for two days cycling. There is so much to explore.

      Love Denise

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  2. Well, you know I just want to be there and do that ride! I loved the bridge over Ribble! One of these days!

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  3. I love your photo of the ancient bridge over the Ribble!

    It’s good news that the surgery date is set. Continue having the best of times with Michael. It’s the best medicine that there is for both of you.

    I can’t remember if we talked about it when you were in Paris, but Sara has been taking oregano oil capsules to help stave off infection before her surgery on May 15. I don’t know if it’s something that Michael can take but just thought I’d mention it. She takes it with a probiotic tablet.

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    • Thanks for the tip Mary Kay. Not sure if this would be indicated for Michael. I know he is not supposed to have probiotics. At the moment he has had medication to boost his immune system from the haematologist.

      . Give my good wishes to Sara for her surgery too.

      Love Denise

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  4. Thank you for taking us on this mini-tour of one of England’s best-kept secrets! Just beautiful.

    I’m glad you two are enjoying this time together, sight seeing and eating out before your lifestyle change after the surgery.

    Sending lots of love and positive thoughts.

    Lisa

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    • Hi Lisa, thanks for dropping by and your positive thoughts. Glad you enjoyed the tour. Hope you have a good week also. I will be thinking about you and eagerly awaiting your reports.
      Love Denise

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