I’ve only been really up north once, and it was in 2005 for my brother’s first wedding in York. I’m just an absolute southern bean.
So on Friday we set off in Augustus Bloom (that’s the car’s name by the way, because all cars deserve pretty names) to explore the North Yorkshire countryside and to remind ourselves what it’s like to have a sleep uninterrupted by a crying cat.
I’d like to say we set off and sailed up the A1 for our 250 mile drive in one pleasant swoop, but we didn’t, because Chris managed to get an easy-access bum fingering hole in his jeans and so we had to go and hover like idiots outside Ipswich Topman until they opened so he could buy a new pair before we could get on our merry way.
On the way up I cried because of Chris’s driving, I accidentally managed to wee down my leg whilst using the most horrendous urine-soaked toilets known to man and I ate a bag of pork scratchings. Because eating clean is dull and I like hairy, salty dried bits of pork AND I DON’T CARE.
So anyway, nestled in the heart of the moors (not the same moors of Ian Brady and Myra Hindley fame, sadly) was Ox Pasture Hall Hotel, a 4-star romantic retreat that’s apparently quite the hot wedding venue for locals.
Our room was ginormous, our bed was ginormous and our afternoon tea was ginormous. So yeah, supersize everything for Hannah which was an absolute dream. I even ate salmon roe in my sandwiches. True story.
Chris made us go on a ‘nice walk’ which entailed me hiking in heeled Kurt Geiger boots, a white lace dress and a beige trench coat. And when I say hiking I mean I came close to death several times after slipping on leaves next to hefty ledges. But hey, what’s a romantic break without wanting to cry because you may or may not be lost in some unknown northern woods, eh?
We were only gone an hour but somehow managed to work up 8,000 steps or summin ridiculous, so yeah, fit and healthy and all that.
Then we went back and napped on said ginormous bed without Rudey getting fuming about the situation and crying relentlessly. She’s so bloody high maintenance and I’ve no idea where she gets it from…
I got mega dolled up for dinner and wore my new Miss Selfridge dress that will 104% make an appearance in an outfit of the week soon and a pair of old favourites from StylistPick. Chris said my hair looked like Sienna Miller’s, so yeah, life wins all round. We had a bath and watched Stand Up For Cancer (obvs I had to donate, because my heart isn’t black and decaying and full of vampires and horcruxes) and then went and drank prosecco in the hotel bar like sexy, civilized adults.
I think I had 6 courses. This isn’t a bizarre joke. And it was delicious. And I drank a lot of red wine. And yeah, amazingness.
We started with a shot of something strawberry-ish, ate a duck pate platter, drank a teeny bowl of soup and croutons, tore apart lamp chops and cabbage and finished with more wine and a raspberry creme brulee. So yeah, i’m probably gaining weight by the minute at this point, but y’know, whatcha gonna do.
It was really nice staying somewhere were the staff were attentive and ridiculously kind, but also happy to have a chat. One of them told me all about his LOL iPhone 5 insurance scamming, and another one about a wedding fight she’d had to be break up between two bridesmaids who were about to attack each other with their heels because one of them had smacked the bride’s mum round the face. I like people’s funny stories and quirks, and it made me feel more comfortable having people chat to me like an old friend they wanted to make happy rather than a customer.
Mostly I liked Ox Pasture Hall because it was pretty and there was lots of courtyards and fountaing and the gardens and flowers out front made beyond beautiful back drops for photos. We even took a little mosey about after dinner in the dark because turns out Yorkshire air > Ipswich air > London air. So yeah, Hannah’s lungs are probably in a great way right now.
After a dreamy sleep, big boy breakfast (so much pork swanning around my belly right now) we drove home and watched another car hit a pigeon on the A1. HAPPY SATURDAY EVERYONE.
Now i’m off to put on a real pretty face and eat Chinese. Not even sorry.
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