Saturday, 20 September 2008

Day out in Hay-on-Wye . . . and a few new-to-us books!

(Click on photo to enlarge)

How about this view from the car park (at Hay-on-Wye)? That's where my husband and I went
yesterday, partly taking advantage of the good weather, and partly because our recently "holiday" in Devon turned out to be of the there and back again variety, due to the problems with Itsy and bringing her home. We thought we had at least earned ourselves a day out in the bookshops of Hay-on-Wye. This time we actually bought several books. Sometimes, despite there being a million or so books there, nothing that you really HAVE to have will appear. We bought three each yesterday. I bought A Countryman's Day Book by C N French, which is full of wonderful snippets about the weather and country living, gleaned from Thomas Tusser, Maison Rustique (?!), Poor Robin's Almanac, and suchlike. For example, the entry for today reads:

Saint Matthewe Brings on the cold dew.

Geese now at atheir prime are,
which if well roasted are good fare.
Poor Robin's Almanack.
The stone that is rouling can gather no mosse,
who often remooveth is sure of losse.

The rich it compelleth to paie for his pride;

The poore it undooeth on everie side.

Thomas Tusser.

I also bought a book by T C Lethbridge on Gogmagog - The Buried Gods (excellent reading); another antiquarian horse book for my collection; and Sabine Baring-Gould's A Book of the West (Cornwall). OH got two super books on folk lore - one of the Isle of Man and the other of Whitby (OH has connections with both) and a book on the Vikings.

Of course, there aren't ONLY bookshops in Hay. There is a good selection of ironmongers, greengrocers, clothes shops, a big shop selling jigsaws, food shops and little eateries, a chipshop, charity shops, oh - and did I mention bookshops?


If you take the left fork in front of the white house, it will take you down across the river Wye to Clyro, where my literary hero the Rev. Francis Kilvert once lived.

Here is the pub where we sometimes have lunch. The deep red tones of the Virginia Creeper leaves blended well with the pink of the Geraniums.

This is one of my favourite bookshops, but alas, there was nothing there to take our fancy this time.

There are antique shops too. Isn't this a lovely building? We lingered here for a while.


This window is the shop front for a warren of individual "shops" within the building, with a fascinating cornucopia of antiques and collectables. I bought just one thing - something I recognized as a log headcollar block. Horses tied up in stalls would have their headcollar rope passed through a tie-ring on the manger and then through the polished circular wooden "log" and secured with a quick release knot. It reminded me of my childhood days at Testwood Riding Stables.

This one's for GTM. You can deal with MEGA quantities of green beans with this bean slicing machine!

This is a lovely home-made wash board. A lot of work went into this and it is quite unique.

We will go again in another 6 months or so. Meanwhile, I'm going to make the most of the sunshine and give myself half an hour off with my new books . . .

3 comments:

Leanne said...

jennie, we are so alike in our taste in books, i would have bought those books too, well the first two you mention anyway- not the horse book lol!
sounds like a lovely day out,and a nice compensation for having to cut your little break short to sort out poor Itsy. Ive never been to Hay, i will make it there one day!

Leanne x

Arlene Grimm said...

A fun chairside trip to Wales thanks to you Jennie. When I see the country side there, it makes me realize why so many British immigrants settled in the United States South in the 17 and 18 hundreds. Glad you got a bit of a holiday.

Mam said...

Thanks, Jennie, for another wonderful visit. It's hard to keep up with you sometimes.
There is an award for you on my art blog!
http://www.neatcs.wordpress.com
Nancy