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Saturday, 21st July 2001, Cumbria

the promenade at Grange THE TIDE is in at Grange, lapping against the promenade. There's not much to see except the tops of the Spartina grass which has colonised much of the foreshore in recent years. Mallards and gulls are the only birds that are about. Wading birds are sitting it out somewhere, waiting for the tide to retreat.

Morecombe Bay from GrangeA couple of hours later vast expanses of sand have reappeared. There's a full moon at the moment which means that the gravitational effect of sun and moon combined is at its maximum.

Grizedale Lanes

the lane to GrizedaleOn the road alongside Lake Coniston disinfectant mats are still in place in an attempt to prevent the spread of Foot and Mouth disease. Although it doesn't make the papers anymore, locals tell us that there's still on average a new case a day in Cumbria. It's a grey afternoon. The crag tops dissolve into the low cloud. We drive through green tunnels of overhanging foliage on the narrow lane from Hawkshead up to Grizedale Forest.

meadowsweet, GrizedaleCreamy Meadowsweet and lilac-purple Creeping Thistle are are conspicuous in the roadside verges.

sandmartinsand martins Twenty Jackdaws perch on the ridge tiles of our bed and breakfast, the Grizedale Hall Hotel. Our room looks out across a meadow to a river running through the woods. We're on eye level with the Sand Martins hawking for insects just above the rooftop and over the meadow.

A Wholemeal Pizza and a Glass of Wine

I don't often do restaurant reviews, but we enjoy the Italian wholefood at Zefferelli's, above the cinema in Ambleside. It's only as we're leaving that Barbara mentions that there wasn't any meat whatsoever on the menu, and I realise that I've never missed it; there was so much variety that I could go again and eat my way through the menu. An added entertainment is that we're overlooking the town and, down by the church, a car is parked on a double yellow line.

As we study the menu a police van pulls up. As we finish our first course they handcuff the driver. As we eat our main course they frisk the passengers and thoroughly search the vehicle inside and out. Then the police release the driver, leave the scene, as, a minute or two later, does the car. You have been warned; don't park on the double yellows in Ambleside! next page

Richard Bell
Richard Bell,
wildlife illustrator

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