Don't Eat With Your Mouth Full

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steepholm steepholm
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Pobol y Combe
Yesterday I took a couple of hours to do my first (simplest, quickest) Cotswold project field trip - which was, basically, to go to Castle Combe and take some photographs of it. The weather was sunny, it was February (i.e. before the tourist season), and the middle of a working day, so the place was more or less deserted, and I got some nice pictures. To be honest, in a place like that it would be hard not to:


When I visited with Haruka last year, she asked me, "Do people really live here?" In fact, they really do.

I called in at the Old Rectory Tea Room (that's the one with the stable half-door), and chatted with the owner about Japanese tourists. According to her, most visitors to Castle Combe are in fact Japanese, which was music to my ears. They come in organised tours, not necessarily in large coaches but perhaps in groups of half a dozen or less, but they generally can't speak English, so business has to be conducted by gesture. (They are usually also doing Stonehenge, Bath, Bourton-on-the-Water and Lacock - all on the same day?)

Also, the owner has written and self-published a children's book about a family of mice that moves to Castle Combe from London, as she and her family did, which she sells from the tea room shop, with many photographs of the village inside. Apparently her Japanese visitors are fond of buying the little knitted mice she also sells, who feature in the book. This kind of attempt at offering an integrated Castle Combe Enchantment experience is grist to my mill, naturally. It's a pity they can't read the book, but it's so heavily illustrated they barely need to.

Anyway, I don't have anything very interesting to say about all this, except that it's excellent material for the Cotswold project, but I thought you might like to see the pictures.

Thank you, these are lovely. They bring back memories of pickled walnuts consumed in the pub there one long-ago summer!

If you can get a bright clear day in the winter, it's ideal for photographing tourist locations. These are lovely!

I also love the whole tea shop and illustrated book idea. I do hope the Japanese enjoy it.

Oh, my so lovely, especially the one at the bottom right!

That is just so beautiful... Wonderful photos.

I was trying to think why it looked so unreal, and I think it is the strange lack of cars. If that were a Dorset village, there would be Range Rovers parked on the pavement outside all the cottages.

There were a few cars (you can see a couple hiding behind the market cross), but yes, it was pretty clear of them. Perhaps because their owners had driven off to work in them, but there don't seem to be many two-car families, at least!

Perhaps she could get the book translated.

We did discuss that, actually!


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