Wonderland in Wiltshire

Here in the beautiful county of Wiltshire. UK, we are in the thrall of some disruptive weather, namely snow!

Wiltshire, rambling, snow, ice, dog walking
Truffleicious kitchen at Great Chalfield, Wiltshire

As I write this, the weather forecast is informing me that the outside temperature is -3c. Glancing through the window I see the white stuff swirling thickly around. We Brits are obsessed with the weather, as you have probably heard. Ok. I know we don’t have the most enviable climate in the world, but our general topic of conversation is usually the weather? Yes, you’ve guessed it I’m British & what am I writing the blog about? the weather.

snow, ice, beast from the east, British weather
Seasonal weather in the UK?

Personally, I love the snow (probably in my second childhood). Listening to the weather reports gets me quite excited, huge amounts of the white stuff are just my thing. Each morning I jump out from under the duvet, throw back the curtains & become most disappointed to see the dull browns & greens of the stable yard outside. No snow.

This morning was different, I was greeted by a bright translucent light and yes, I could hear the snow. Do you hear the snow? (what I probably mean is I couldn’t hear anything, )in the world outside lay a virginal white counterpane, muffling the sounds of a normal morning. It had arrived. The white stuff.

snow, Wiltshire, wonderland, stable yard, staddle stones
The stable yard. Great Chalfield.

Now, I was doubly excited as I have a 22 mth old black Labrador, goes by the name of Gypsy and this was the first time she had ever seen snow. I was beside myself. What would she make of it? would she want to go out in it? Well now was the time to find out.

Donning, hat, gloves, wellies & coat I clipped the beast into her harness. (Not to good on the “come” command is our Gypsy.) & off we went. It was with trepidation that Gypsy put one paw into the snow, her nose followed and a large amount of snuffling ensued. Satisfied that this was top-notch stuff, she leapt in the air & bounded off. Great for her, but not so good for me who was attached to the other end of her harness. Down I went. I would like to say I bounded up, but knees not being what they once where, I slowly stood, much to the mutts disapproval as to why I was being so slow!

snow, dogs, Labradors, walking, Wiltshire
A snuffle in the snow. It’s a dogs life.

I am lucky enough too live in the grounds of Great Chalfield Manor, an impressive Medieval Manor house with Arts & Crafts gardens, made even more imposing by the fall of snow. Tennis ball in hand we set of for a trek around the lake & gardens.

snow, wiltshire, manor house, Great Chalfield, rambling
Great Chalfield Manor, Wiltshire

I have lately discovered a way to control Gypsy, the answer lies in a tennis ball. She will do anything to have you throw a ball & delights in snuffling back wards & forwards to find it. (even treats are not of interest.) She frolics like a lamb, ball held firmly between here teeth, only dropping it if an interesting smell wafts across her nostrils. “Find the ball Gyp” is my cry & picking it up she comes scampering back to me. Job done.

We carry on our ramble, across the fields. where we meet the beautiful Oliver. Neither horse or dog have any interest in each other. Gypsy’s quest being the wild fowl skittering over the ice on the water meadow & Oliver’s being my pocket, always hopeful for a carrot or polo mint. He is out of luck.

We turn for home. It has been an exhilarating walk for us both. I contemplate why us Brits always use the weather as the main topic of conversation & come to several conclusions:

  • Our weather is so diverse there is always something to comment on?
  • Our lives are so boring we have nothing else to talk about?

Or:

  • There was nothing on the television last night!

What do you think? Or do you have another explanation?

Labradors, Wiltshire, Walking, Gypsy, Rambling
” Where’s that ball Gyp “

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