The other day I was a companion. Viv’s dad has taken a fall and she needed to go to Oxford to see him so I stepped into the breach. First – what were we going to do – my favourite trip in the Dales, finishing with a picnic in the most beautiful place. As we have a very smart camper van I filled it with lovely food, milk for tea and the crossword. It was a beautiful day, sun shining and really clear. Viv came with me and introduced me to the client. What I noticed was on her white board all the dates arranged with Viv, all in big letters. When we arrived she was so please to see us, excited to be going out, to the point she said ‘can I pinch you to check this is real’. These trips out are the highlight of her week, they are regular, exciting and different every time. She was ready to go so off we went.
I drove to Kingsdale, a beautiful dale steeped in history. During the second world war Italian POW’s straightened out the river bed. This triggered an amazing conversation about how she was evacuated, what they did, how it felt to be a child in the war – We have no idea.It is also the valley with Keldhead in, a cave rising, where all the water from the surrounding limestone fells resurges out of a hole in the side of the river bed, a natural wonder and a must see.
Going up the little lanes, over passes was so exciting, seeing the amazing the drystone walls make. What was good, in the van you are high up, you can see over the walls and for miles along the road. We stopped and looked at this beautiful waterfall. It was so interesting listening to the adventures she had had, places she had been, her family holidays and just taking in the shear beauty. It was a treat for me as much as for her.
We went through Dent, stopped had a look round and used the local facilities. Dent, with its cobbled streets and cosy cafes is a delight to visit and in such a beautiful setting.
Then off and up into Barbondale, a hidden gem. We stopped at the Washtubs, I set up the table and chairs, unwrapped the sandwiches, cut cake and I put the kettle on. The peace and serenity of this place is next to none. We explored the and went for a short walk, all the time taking in the beautiful weather and views. We talked about our loved ones, places we had visited and people we had lost. It was a privilege for me to spend time with such an interesting person who, I discovered had a wicked sense of humour adding to the day. It was time to move on, we could of stayed for hours but we both had other commitments. …..And we didn’t get time to do the crossword, guess thats for another day.