We decided to take a drive out to Exeter today as we haven`t been for a couple of months at least...I noticed how much things had changed since we last did, fields ploughed into neat red stripes, hedges trimmed, colour appearing in the trees like highlights, Old Mans Beard tumbling over the hedges like a fluffy waterfall and the last fuschia bells dripping scarlet in the hedgerows...
We stopped on the way beside the Powderham estate for coffee and cake in the car, everywhere looked as though it was on `soft focus` as the horizons were hazy, the sky milky, and the air soft with no wind...
It was lovely to be in the countryside, sitting beside the little stream and the reeds that whispered in the movement of the water...I was surprised to see so few deer in the park, normally there`s loads, but there were only one or two grazing today.
The hedgerows were full of berries though, scarlet hips and haws, and lots of blackberries, which although they were small were ripe, so I decided on the way back I`d pick some for a blackberry and apple pie.
Much refreshed we drove on and parked up in Exeter, then headed down to the quay. Exeter quay is a lovely part of the city, with the river Exe slowly winding its way past the old warehouses, that are now home to lots of gorgeous crafty shops, little coffee shops and interesting craft workshops.
The quay is always a popular place at the week-end, with people stopping for a coffee or drink at the pubs, or strolling and cycling beside the river.
We walked down to Trews weir which was just a bubbling murmur today, unlike the beginning of the year when we had floods and it literally roared! I noticed a lovely patch of soft lilac Michelemas daisies growing beside the bank, which I was pleased to see, always a sign of Autumn to my mind.
I love this building beside the river, it used to be an old mill and is now converted to housing, it has such a lovely feel about it, and must be a nice place to live.
We stopped at The Welcome café for a pot of tea, the cakes certainly looked delicious, but we managed to restrain ourselves!
After our pitstop we walked down the other side of the river, passing this little building, it used to be a run down shed, but now its been painted up and turned into a gallery.
I think it looks fabulous, and I loved the lovely ammonite shaped bowl in the window.
Butts ferry was crossing the river as we walked down, its a hand operated ferry, and the crossing has been used since 1641.
We left the quay and river and headed into the city, the sun came out and it was lovely and hot, this is the `House that moved` and the oldest building in Exeter, it was called the Merchants house and was moved 90m when a new road was proposed and this was in the way, it was going to be demolished, but it was quickly listed and funds were found to move it...
Across the road from the house is Stepcote Hill, its the oldest street in Exeter. The hill was the main route into Exeter from the river, and it was used by strings of pack horses, and weary travellers.
We walked round to the Cathedral, which is a beautiful building and has amazing carvings on the front façade...
The green was busy as always at the weekend, people enjoying the sunshine and sitting at the cafes eating lunch and having coffee..
We had a lovely day, and on the way home picked lots of blackberries, which I made into a pie and we ate with lashings of cream for tea yum.