Monday, March 14, 2011

Hartlebury Common trek

Had the Bratii over on Sunday and took them out to Hartlebury Common; they've never been there before. It's one of those annoyances I'm going to have with Devil Child and Chewie - once one is old enough to just need a booster seat the other's still in a full seat and it's just a pain to transfer those between cars. In the case of the Bratii, Minor is now on a booster seat and Major needs nothing so it's a piece of cake to transport them around and give their long-suffering parents some peace and quiet.

I was surprised at how busy the place was I headed for the three car-parks along the Worcester Road and just about managed to get into the third one. Still some large puddles around from the rain that had threatened to cancel the whole shindig, but they refrained from jumping in them. Possibly something to do with the fact I'd told them they'd be walking back if they did :-)

"Which way are we going?" asked Minor
"Up there" I pointed to the ridge
"Hmmpf" replied Minor unimpressed
I laughed for reasons about to become apparent. We headed up and reached the base of the ridge.

"Oo" said Minor looking up
"Yeah it's steeper than it looks from afar" I laughingly told him
Up we went went with my tired old bones lagging behind as they forged on ahead. They reached the support beams that have been fixed across the top and stopped to examine them.
"Turn around" I said as I reached them.
"Woah!" they both said
Yeah it's a pretty impressive view from the top. We headed out onto the plateau and headed along the path between the rowed forest before plunging in. Better in the Summer when it's denser, but still impressive.

Minor had picked up on some horse tracks and was desperate to see a horse; as a result both Major and I kept pointing at the dogs that had been brought u for walks and calling "horse - very small horse" didn't even get tiring :-)

Through the trees along the ridge-line to Wilden top car-park where they looked at the map and saw the Pool and the Bog marked and insisted we go and find them. We headed along the path to the pool which was much muddier as it was all under shade.

Minor kept trying jokes and riddles; most disappointed when I kept answering them.

"I'm old" I told him "I've heard them all" Gave him some back that we hadn't heard before. Taught them about how so many riddles rely on the listener making assumptions about what they're not told. Major took it on board and solved "Which came first the chicken or the egg" by stating "the egg".

"Didn't say it had to be a chicken egg; dinosaur eggs came first" Most impressive.

Minor showed how his mind associates. We'd reached some of the farmhouses and we headed towards the "White House"
"Sharks" declared Minor

Major and I both looked at each other in bewilderment.
"You get sharks in America" he elaborated
'White House'; see.

Met a horse coming the other way. Minor paid it little attention. We reached the paddock and suddenly he got interested; go figure.

We kept going and going and got bored before we managed to reach the pool I was also keeping an eye on the time. So we headed back to the ridge.
"Okay we can go down and across, or we can go across and down" I told them
"Down" shouted Minor and charged off down the slope.
Major ran after him, overtook him and beat him. I made my way carefully down. They stopped at the bottom for me
"I thought I'd walk" I laughingly told them before waving them onwards in the right direction. I wasn't worried about them getting lost I'd made sure they knew to follow the sun until they reached a road and to follow along that away from the Garden Centre and the pub.

We headed to the bog. Minor ran off and Major chased after him straight through all the bracken. Round in circles they went until Minor ran back to me for protection. Foolish child :-) He ran off and Major joined me out of breathe.
"It's exhausting running after him" he told me
"Now you know how I feel with the both of you" I replied with a smile.
He nodded back seriously.

We reached the bog. We looked at the bog. Minor brought up the subject we'd be discussing earlier about sharks; decided the bog was home to a crocodile. We both ran after him snapping our arms like jaws.

Major split off and then let out a loud yelp. He'd wandered into some dry stalks - dry stalks with dry thorns on them. Minor and I had a laugh at him stuck in the middle of all these thorns as he gingerly made his way back out again.

Back we went to the car-park. Minor split off along a 'short-cut' path and was brought up short by the new fence. Major laughed at him as he'd seen the fence and hadn't followed. Then I laughed at him as he took another path and came to the fence that had been concealed in a dip. Finally back to the car and away.

It was fun. Plotting it out we spent just over an hour and covered about 2 miles. I'll have to take them to the fair sometime which has acquired a whole heap of new rides and also check out what's happening at Hartlebury Castle. Just nice that the times are coinciding that I can take them places as the weather gets better. If only they lived a little closer; just going to be a pain to travel in the 'wrong' direction then back and onward then back again.