Birthday Celebrations!

Trip Start Apr 10, 2010
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Trip End Apr 10, 2011


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Flag of United Kingdom  , England,
Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Late morning revealed to Joel fresh coffee and big plump pancakes to kick off the birthday celebrations. 3 makeshift candles made of matchsticks decorated the delicious breakfast. It was wonderful! Today we had decided to go and see the home of the world famous inventor William Armstrong, whose work with hydraulics and hydro-electrics made him insanely rich and allowed him to build his dream home, which was powered from water (1st in the whole world). The whole estate was just a huge water feature!

The weather turned out to be against us though and we had to battle through lots of peppery rain and drizzle. Yes, we're back in England.

After another celebratory lunch, we hiked up the hill to a labyrinth, which had been carved out of a vast rhododendron forest. It was enormous and we had no idea just how complex it would be to find an exit. We passed several groups in our quest and heard them grizzling about having gone in circles. But we had a merry old time despite the wet clothes.

The house was so crowded with tourists we had to be very patient so see each room. William Armstrong, was a man after our own hearts, an intense lover of nature (particularly dogs) and a fineness for appreciating art and natural beauty.

The outstanding gardens and the house’s quirky architecture was second best to the colossal marble fireplace feature in the living area. We had not seen anything so spectacular since Biltmore castle, and we were astounded.

Upon leaving we journeyed further south, passing by the 'Little Chef’ for delicious meal and a stint of free wifi to check facebook with all the B’day wishes. Jena had the man put "happy birthday" on Joel’s brownie plate secretly while he was in the bathroom.

Joel had a wonderful birthday made possible by Jena who took such amazing care of him. King for a day!
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